Friday, July 12, 2013
Tax Agent or Angel?
Last month Doc and I received a “love letter” from the California Franchise Tax Board (FTB). They told us our reported taxes for 2012 were underpaid by several thousand dollars and we needed to make immediate payment.
We checked our numbers and knew that our calculations were correct, yet they did not match the numbers the FTB was using. Our Tax Accountant wrote an official letter stating that we did not agree. We sent that letter along with appropriate documents.
Yesterday we received a secondary “love letter” from the FTB saying we owed the initial amount plus interest, plus penalties! Yikes. Doc was fairly aggravated. This morning Doc awoke saying the first thing he was going to do was to phone the FTB. I was surprised at that. Usually I need to “pester” Doc numerous times for him to take such actions. Or, often I get impatient waiting for him to do things, so I take over. This morning Doc got on the phone at 8 a.m. He was a man on a mission!
Doc called the FTB six times getting the message that they were “experiencing an unusually high volume of calls, please call back at a later time”. I could see Doc’s level of frustration rising with each call. Finally on the 7th call he got through, but was told it would be approximately 14 minutes on hold until he could speak with a Tax Agent. I had visions of those cartoon characters where the level of red rises higher and higher as the anger or frustration levels rise.
I had a 10 a.m. appointment, so I wished Doc well, kissed him goodbye and left while he was hanging on hold. A few miles from the house I realized that I was fearing the dreaded FTB Agent and encounter. So I adjusted my attitude and actions. Out loud I said, “Please provide Doc patience and wisdom as he deals with this. If there are any Divine Beings within earshot of me right now who were former Tax Agents or Tax Attorneys, please feel free to hop in and help out. Please deal lovingly with the Agent. Thanks!”
Doc phoned me as I was parking my pickup. He said, “Done! All cleared up! 8 minutes and it is finished!” We had been somewhat expecting to “do battle” especially when finding out that the Tax Agent had never received our letter and supporting documents. Doc began explaining things to her, but before he was able to say much, she was way ahead of him and spotted the glitch! The error was on their side and we will soon get a letter saying all is OK.
Thank You Tax Angel. What a valuable lesson on expectations and overcoming fears.