In case you’re illiterate or generally ignorant about the reputation of our government, you know that there’s a ginormous deficit that our Congressional representatives like to crow about ad nauseam. And because squawking will only get you so many votes, many in Congress have decided that tasking the IRS (and thus setting up an easy scapegoat) with scraping together more revenues.

Accordingly, the IRS is not only hassling people for their milk money but they are also ramping up the number of audits of wealthy individuals.

The Journal warns us about this increasing number of financial DREs, noting that many rubes get the notice in the mail, freak the hell out and cut a check to the Treasury. However, if you’ve got a solid case against the Service or balls of concrete, than there are some tips that you would be wise to heed:

“Hire the wrong tax preparer” – If your tax pro had the unfortunate luck to get swept up in Operation Brass Tax, then you’re obviously in bad shape. If you’ve got the means, don’t cheap out on the Mom & Pop (sorry Moms and Pops out there) tax prep shop and find a qualified CPA, attorney or enrolled agent to guide you through this nightmare.

“The Ostrich approach” – The strategy of simply ignoring the IRS will work about as well as bulldozing your house.

“Frivolity” – In other words, the Irwin Schiff method. Arguing that the 16th Amendment to the Constitution is a one big joke never impresses the IRS or judges.

“Automatic Surrender” – You may be surprised to learn that the IRS is not the omnipotent federal agency that it may implicitly claim to be in its letter. Long story short, don’t just take them at their word, unless you’re the type that wants to pay more taxes.

Of course there are several other strategies that the Journal omits that you should want to avoid, including:

Violent Retaliation – No one wins here.

Claiming to be a celebrity – Fame has yet to prove an effective deterrent to IRS nagging.

Cry about it – The IRS, while sympathetic, will not be swayed by tears.

While everything listed above is tempting, we advise getting professional help and it probably won’t hurt to keep the proceedings cordial.

How to Fight the IRS [WSJ]