IRS Form 843 Instructions & Details - Request for Abatement & Refund

IRS Form 843Purposes of Form 843

Taxpayers can use IRS Form 843 to ask the IRS to claim a refund or to ask for an abatement of certain kinds of taxes, penalties, fees, and interest. Here are the most common reasons that a taxpayer uses IRS Form 843:

  • To request an abatement of tax, other than income, estate, or gift tax
  • To request a refund or abatement of interest, penalties, or other additions to tax caused by certain IRS errors, delays, or erroneous written advice
  • To request a refund or abatement of a penalty or other addition to tax due to reasonable cause, or any other reason provided by law
  • To request a refund of certain taxes withheld by your employer in error, if your employer will not adjust the overcollection

You generally will have to file a separate Form 843 for each type of tax or fee, or for each tax year. You cannot request an abatement or refund of multiple fees or taxes, or for multiple tax forms, in a single Form 843.

Filling out IRS Form 843

First, enter your social security number on Line 1 of the form, as well as your spouse’s social security number if you are filing Form 843 regarding a joint tax return filing. Next, enter the tax period for which you are claiming a refund or abatement. Then, choose the type of tax or fee that best describes your reason for filing Form 843. If you are requesting a refund or abatement of a penalty assessed by the IRS, fill in the Internal Revenue Code section number that is on the Notice of Assessment that you received about the penalty.

Request for Abatement of Interest Due to IRS Error or Delay

The IRS will only abate interest on a tax in certain limited circumstances that involve IRS delays or errors. If you are requesting an abatement of interest for this reason, you must write “Request for Abatement of Interest Under Section 6404(e)” at the top of Form 843. Complete all lines on the form, on which you will have to give the following information:

  • Dates of payment of any interest or taxes for the tax period involved
  • Type of tax involved
  • The date on which the IRS notified you in writing about the matter
  • The specific period for which you are requesting abatement
  • The circumstances of your case, and
  • The reasons that you believe that you would receive grossly unfair treatment if the IRS failed to grant your request for abatement

Request for Abatement or Refund of a Penalty or Addition to Tax as a Result of Written Advice

The IRS can abate a penalty or addition to tax as a result of written advice from an IRS employee or officer in the following circumstances:

  • The written advice was in response to your request for advice from the IRS in writing
  • You reasonably relied on the written advice, and
  • The penalty or addition to tax did not result from your failure to provide the IRS with adequate or accurate information.

In order to request an abatement or refund of a penalty or addition to tax as a result of written advice, you must write “Request for Abatement of Penalty or Addition to Tax Under Section 6404(f)” at the top of your Form 843. Complete all lines on the form, including the date of any payment that you made toward the penalty or addition to tax.

You also must attach certain documentation to Form 843 if you are requesting an abatement of a penalty or addition to tax:

  • A copy of your written request for advice to the IRS
  • A copy of the erroneous written advice that you received from the IRS, and
  • The report of tax adjustments identifying the penalty or addition to tax and items relating to the erroneous advice of the IRS (if any report exists).

Form 843 also requires you to designate the type of fee or return involved in your claim for refund or abatement. Finally, you will need to explain in detail your reasons for filing the claim, and show your computation for the credit, refund, or abatement. If you attach additional sheets, include your name and SSN or employer identification number (EIN) on it, and attach any supporting evidence that you might have.

Keep in mind that you can only file this request within the allowable collection period for the penalty or addition to tax, and that you must have paid the penalty or addition to tax within the allowable period for claiming a credit or refund of the penalty or addition to tax.

Submitting Form 843 to the IRS

You must submit Form 843 and all necessary attachments to the IRS for processing. If you received a notice from the IRS regarding the matter, you should send Form 843 and attachments to the address on that notice. Otherwise, you generally should send Form 843 to the IRS service center where you normally would file your income tax return. Either you, your tax preparer, or your authorized representative can file Form 843 on your behalf.

What You Cannot Request Using Form 843

Form 843 is limited in the types of tax, interest, penalties, and fees that you can request to be abated. For instance, you can file a request for abatement of interest or penalties related to income tax, but you cannot file a request for abatement of income tax. You also cannot use Form 843 for the following reasons:

  • For an employer to request a refund or abatement of FICA tax, Railroad Retirement Tax, or income tax withholding
  • To amend a previously filed income or employment tax return
  • To claim a refund of agreement fees, offer-in-compromise fees, or lien fees
  • To request an abatement of gift or estate taxes

There are also circumstances where you may not have to file Form 843, or where you may have to file a different form. If you receive a notice from the IRS, you should follow the instructions on the notice. You may not be required to file Form 843 in all circumstances.