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Understanding Your CP05A Notice

We are examining your return and we need documentation to verify the following:

  • Your income
  • The withholding you reported on your income and social security benefits
  • The tax credits you claimed
  • The household help you claimed
  • Your business income.

We are holding your refund pending the results of the examination.

What you need to do

  • Read the notice carefully. It explains the information you must send to us.
  • Provide copies of the documentation we request to verify the items that we are auditing.
  • Tear off the voucher on the last page of this notice and attach it to the documents you are submitting.
  • Send the requested information within 30 days from the date of this notice to the address shown on the notice.

You may want to

  • Review this notice with your tax preparer.
  • If you are experiencing economic harm, believe an IRS system or procedure isn’t working as it should, or are seeking help in resolving tax problems that have not been resolved through normal channels, you may be eligible for Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) assistance. You can reach them at 1-877-777-4778 or TTY/TTD 1-800-829-4059.

Answers to Common Questions

Why is my return being reviewed?
While most returns are accepted as filed, some are selected for examination. The IRS examines some federal tax returns to determine if income, expenses, and credits are being reported accurately. The IRS selects returns for examination using various methods which include random sampling, computerized screening, and comparison of information received by the IRS such as Forms W-2 and 1099. Having your return selected for examination does not suggest that you made an error or were dishonest.

What if I did not file a tax return claiming the items you are questioning and someone else is using my name and social security number?
Send us a completed and signed Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit. You can download this form online at You can also refer to the IRS Identity Theft resource page for more information.

Tips for next year

  • Review all of your income and withholding documents for completeness and review your return to make sure you are eligible to claim all income, credits and business income that you reported
Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 23-Dec-2014

How to get help

  • Call the 1-800, 1-866 or 1-888 number listed on the top right corner of your notice.
  • Authorize someone (e.g., accountant) to contact the IRS on your behalf using Form 2848.
  • See if you qualify for help from a Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.