Incorrect tax assessment, what to do?

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You filed a tax return and the response on that return is an assessment. What if that is an incorrect tax assessment, what to do?

Incorrect tax assessment

If you file your personal income tax return, then you need to wait a couple of months and then the tax office informs you about the amount due or refundable. What is if that amount is not in line with what you expected, then there is an incorrect tax assessment.

There are several situations that can happen. Maybe the tax office send you a letter in which they announce that they will not impose the assessment as you filed the return. In that letter the reason for this change is explained.

We experience that persons often forget an employment they have had for a short period of time, or an after payment of a previous employment. In both cases the past employer provided you with an income statement. Maybe that has not reached you, because you moved or changed email address. This employer also communicates these overviews with the Dutch tax office, hence the tax office knows what income you should be reporting. If you do not, the tax office will make the change for you.

Appeal

You have the right to appeal against an assessment you disagree with in 6 weeks from the date the assessment carries. However, if you appeal against the afore mentioned income that was announced to you, you should have replied to that announcement already to proof there was made a mistake somewhere. If no mistake was made, the appeal will have no effect.

The period to appeal is 6 weeks from the date of the assessment, please note, that is under the condition the assessment was correctly provided to the tax payer. If you no longer live at that address, because you moved abroad, and you never received any assessment, then  the 6 week period starts to count from the first day you were able to take notice of the assessment.

Too late appeal

If you did receive the assessment at your address but for any given reason you did not reply to this incorrect tax assessment, can you then still appeal? No you cannot.

The rule is max six weeks to make the system more consistent. Consistent in the sense that the tax office cannot receive a surprise appeal 3 months after the date of the assessment. That would make the tax system inconsistent, as all assessments basically are temporary. That is not good for the communication flow between tax office and tax payer.

What if you do have an incorrect tax assessment and the period to appeal has been exceeded? In that case you write a kind request to the tax office to ask them to have a look at what you think is incorrect. Then the tax office can reply by manner of courtesy to your request. If a genuine mistake or miscalculation was made, the tax office is kind enough to update the assessment. However, if the tax office has a different opinion, then you are informed about this opinion, but you have no more rights to go to court for this matter, as you were too late.

Incorrect tax assessment
Incorrect tax assessment

Your responsibility

You can hire a tax advisor to file your income tax return and to assist you with your tax matters, but magic is not one of the services a tax advisor provides. Even though sometimes we feel tax is so exciting, it is magic.

With this I refer to messages the tax office sends to you, are not necessarily send to your tax advisor. There is no crystal bowl that informs the tax advisor about your mail you receive at home.

This sounds a bit childish, but exactly this is the complaint we sometimes receive. That we are the all seeing tax eye that should have known an incorrect tax assessment was received by the tax office to which now no appeal can be made, as it is too late.

A tax payer has obligations and responsibilities. The obligation to comply with the rules and regulations and the responsibility to look after himself all is processed correctly. For that you can hire a tax advisor, but then you also need to fully disclose the tax advisor on messages received by you. Then the necessary action can be taken to prevent an incorrect tax assessment.

Orange Tax Services

We can check for you if the assessment you question is indeed incorrect. Or we can assist you to appeal an incorrect ex officio tax assessment. That is what we do on a daily basis. We think tax is exciting, almost magic.