It is very important to update the IRS with your most recent address in order to stay up to date with any mailings they might send you.If you do not update your address with the IRS, the IRS may send important correspondence (e.g. refunds and notices) to your old address. If for some reason the Post Office fails to forward the IRS correspondence to you, or only forwards it after a lengthy delay, the consequences could be costly.
Why Update Address with IRS?
In the case of a tax audit or controversy, the IRS doesn’t have to prove delivery. All it has to do is send correspondence to your “last known address.” If the IRS sends a correspondence to your old address, you cannot claim that you did not receive it.
For example, if you move after filing a return and IRS mails a refund check to your old address, the refund may be delayed and IRS won’t owe you any interest for the delay. You will be out of the money until they figure out your new address.
IRS Address Change Form 8822
Similarly, if IRS sends a notice of a tax deficiency to your old address, you may never receive it. This can have major consequences in how you approach this issue. After 90 days, you will lose the right to contest the matter in the Tax Court. The only remaining option will be federal court and you will have to pay the tax first, and there may be other tactical disadvantages of doing so.
Wrong Address with IRS
The biggest issue for most taxpayers with a wrong address is that if you do owe tax and are delayed in learning about it, the penalties and interest costs will accrue even though you didn’t know you had an outstanding tax liability. Beyond penalties, there are other notices IRS must send to you before taking certain actions affecting you. These are more rare, but it is still of vital importance to have a correct address on file with the IRS in order to find out about these issues as soon as possible.
Once you file a tax return showing your new address, IRS will make the change itself but only after the return is processed. This could take many weeks after you file. IRS is also required to update your address in its files to reflect any permanent forwarding address you give to the U.S. Postal Service, but that updating also could take time.
How to Change Address with the IRS?
The best approach to ensure that the IRS has your latest address is to use Form 8822 which you can use to notify IRS of the change. To make the change with respect to your income tax returns, just check off Box 1, and fill in the information requested in Part 1. It is very important to sign the form, make a copy for your records, and send the original to the IRS at the address listed on the reverse of the form (envelope enclosed for your convenience). By filing this form and saving a copy for your records, you can ensure that the IRS has the most up to date information about how to contact you regarding tax matter.