Lawmakers Crack Down On IRS For Doing The Unthinkable
(LibertySociety.com) – On June 7, a letter shared with Fox Business from the House Committee on Oversight and Reform said members of Congress are concerned about the findings from a May audit showing the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) destroyed about 30 million return documents from American taxpayers in March 2021. The letter also stated the committees are looking into any misconduct that may have taken place. The correspondence is referencing an audit conducted on May 4 by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), revealing the massive IRS document dump, and Congress wants answers regarding the suspicious incident.
What the IRS Destroyed
The initial point of the TIGTA audit was to see how the IRS was handling a modernization of paper tax returns after taxpayers were encouraged to e-file. The process of dealing with paper returns slows the IRS down, creating a drag on the whole system. The audit was also triggered because of the enormous backlog of physical returns filed with the tax entity, and it revealed last year’s massive document destruction. According to the TIGTA report, the IRS typically uses those papers to complete compliance checks after processing tax returns. The documents included W-2s, 1098s, and 1099s from taxpayers across the US.
The IRS Response and Republican Fears
Following the audit, the IRS claimed the measure resulted in “no negative taxpayer consequences,” as they came to the agency through third parties, and American citizens will have no penalties levied against them for the missing documents. However, Representatives James Comer (R-KY) and Nancy Mace (R-SC) aren’t so sure. Their concern is the missing documents might trigger audits on everyday Americans who were compliant when filing their tax returns. Not only that, but they worry the action might slow down a government agency that already works at a snail’s pace.
The Republicans stated the IRS might now demand more copies from taxpayers, even though they’re the ones who destroyed previously provided copies, creating undue stress on US citizens who complied with tax law.
They further said the TIGTA report gave the IRS recommendations for better management and efficiency, but the legislators don’t believe the taxing body will implement any changes. They suggested the IRS prioritize e-filing forms, update procedures to identify non-compliant taxpayers, and develop a process by which penalties are levied consistently for business tax return filers. According to the report, the IRS only agreed to the first recommendation from the TIGTA audit.
Fox Business attempted to get a response to the story from the IRS, but the agency refused to make a statement.
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