You’d think that rich people would get audited by the IRS the most, but that’s not true - low-income people, who often claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), are among the most-audited groups in America. And where you live might also play a part.
One county in Mississippi, which is mostly Black and low-income, is the most-audited county in America. In fact, most IRS audits happen across the southern U.S.
This is because those counties are lower income and often claim the EITC, and the government wants to make sure people aren’t misusing it. But the counties with the highest audit rates are all Black, Latinx, and Native American areas. Coincidence?
If you count on your tax refund to provide a much-needed financial boost to your cash flow, watch out for an audit - it can mean getting your refund withheld, and can take over a year to be resolved even if you’ve done nothing wrong.
Taxes can be confusing, and mistakes can easily be made.
In most major cities and in many rural areas, there are Low Income Taxpayer Clinics providing free tax filing support, so make sure to check those out if you want to make sure your taxes are good to go - and avoid getting audited!