Here’s a summary of what the IRS is doing to increase enforcement of the tax laws and to boost the collection of current and back taxes. You’ve heard about the recent legislation for 87,000 new agents but there’s more going on.
470 NEW AUDITORS
The IRS is hiring 470 new auditors. That doesn’t sound like many, but these auditors will be looking at a specific type of taxpayer. Those taxpayers include small businesses and the self-employed.
The Internal Revenue Service is actually one of the largest single employers of professional accountants, and the IRS is now hiring 470 additional revenue agents who will specialize in auditing or examining both individual and business taxpayers nationwide.
AUDITORS WILL LOOK AT SELF EMPLOYED AND SMALL BUSINESSES
What is especially telling about these new agents/auditors is that these new hires will join the agency’s Small Business Self Employed (SB/SE) division. They will be looking for the correct tax liability for a variety of both individual and business taxpayers, including sole proprietorships, small corporations, partnerships, and fiduciaries. They will also be looking for potential fraud, tax schemes and abusive tax shelters.
The addition of these 470 auditors for the Small Business Self Employed division was announced before Congress passed the new $80-billion package for the IRS.
$80-BILLION AND 87,000 NEW AGENTS
Yes, that $80-billion package to support the IRS is now federal law and the IRS is hiring and training the first of the 87,000 new agents. About half of the total spending package will be for enforcement and to increase collections of tax revenue. While there was discussion that the new agents will target taxpayers with annual incomes of $400,000 and up, we now know that lower income taxpayers will also be targeted. Gee, it sounds like everyone is going to be targeted, doesn’t it?
STEPPED UP COLLECTION EFFORTS MAY ALREADY BE STARTING
This year, 2022, is the year that the IRS might actually start to step up its collection efforts. It’s true that the IRS fell way behind in its collection efforts — as well as in processing tax returns — because of the Covid shutdowns. But America and the IRS are recovering. Now, the IRS is catching up on processing tax returns (some taxpayers have waited more than a year for their refunds) and the IRS is catching up on its collection efforts.
On June 21st the IRS reported that “more than twice as many returns await processing compared to a typical year at this point in the calendar year,” but the IRS at the same time said that the backlog of personal returns received in 2021 and the backlog in business returns received in 2021 will soon be cleared up. And that means more resources will be available for collections.
WHO WILL BE TARGETED FOR IRS COLLECTIONS?
Clearly, anyone with an already outstanding tax bill will be targeted for renewed collection efforts. Also, taxpayers who didn’t file tax returns will be targeted. Remember, you can’t cover up or ignore income statements such as W2s or 1099s because copies are always sent to the IRS. Even if you haven’t received a letter or notice yet from the IRS it could be coming soon.
And, as a matter of fact, in early 2022 the IRS announced it was not sending out these debt notification letters because it wanted to concentrate on other priorities. That doesn’t mean the IRS was dismissing bills for money that was owed because the IRS also warned that interest and penalties would continue to add up even if taxpayers were not being notified about their debts.
CRYPTOCURRENCY HOLDERS WILL BE LOOKED AT
The IRS is also starting to look at the holders of cryptocurrency. The IRS is asking taxpayers to report if they even have cryptocurrency. It doesn’t matter if you sold it for a profit or a loss — now the IRS wants you to report just owning it. Now think about that. The IRS doesn’t ask if you own gold or stocks or have savings accounts — but the IRS is asking if you have cryptocurrency. If that isn’t a warning sign, what is?
WHAT SHOULD YOU BE DOING NOW
Clearly you should be taking steps to pay down your debt or have your debt removed before the IRS takes action against you. If you can pay your tax bill pay it. If you can’t pay your tax bill talk to a tax professional now about seeking relief whether its a payment plan or an Offer In Compromise or using other Fresh Start Programs. The faster you act, the more in control you will be and perhaps the more money and aggravation you will save.
We offer a free telephone consultation to discuss your tax debt options and if you are eligible for the IRS Fresh Start Program which includes the IRS Offer In Compromise Program. The free consultation takes about 15 minutes and this video tells you what to expect during the conversation with a tax resolution specialist.
Here again is the direct phone number to call our senior tax resolution specialist Tom at our office: 949-359-0810
Or, you can call our general number on this page to reach any of our tax resolution experts about the IRS Fresh Start Initiative or the IRS Offer In Compromise.