As part of a larger effort to ensure compliance and fairness, the Internal Revenue Service today announced that it will step up efforts to visit high-income taxpayers who in prior years have failed to timely file one or more of their tax returns.
Following the recent and ongoing hiring of additional enforcement personnel, IRS revenue officers across the country will increase face-to-face visits with high-income taxpayers who haven’t filed tax returns in 2018 or previous years. These visits are primarily aimed at informing these taxpayers of their tax filing and paying obligations and bringing these taxpayers into compliance.
“The IRS is committed to fairness in the tax system, and we want to remind people across all income categories that they need to file their taxes,” said Paul Mamo, Director of Collection Operations, Small Business/Self Employed Division. “These visits focusing on high-income taxpayers will be taking place across the country. We want to ensure taxpayers know their options to get right with their taxes and avoid bigger issues later.”
For the current tax season, the IRS reminds taxpayers that everyone should file their 2019 tax return by the April 15 filing deadline regardless of whether they can pay in full. Six-month filing extensions are also available, although that does not extend the April deadline for paying any taxes owed.
“Taxpayers having delinquent filing or payment obligations should consult a competent tax advisor before waiting to be contacted by an IRS revenue officer, Mamo said. “It is always worthwhile to take advantage of various methods of getting back into filing or payment compliance before being personally contacted by the IRS.”
For the new visits taking place, high-income non-filers taxpayers are those who generally received income in excess of $100,000 during a tax year and did not file a tax return with the IRS.
Taxpayers who exercise their best efforts in filing their tax returns and paying or entering into agreements to pay their taxes deserve to know that the IRS is aggressively pursuing others who have failed to satisfy their filing and payment obligations.
During the visits, IRS revenue officers will share information and work with the taxpayer to hopefully resolve the tax issue
For this new initiative, these high-income taxpayers have typically received numerous letters from the IRS over an extended period of time, so they generally realize they have a tax issue.
Revenue officer visits shouldn’t be confused with scams. Here’s what to look for:
- While most IRS revenue officer visits to a taxpayer are unannounced, they will always provide two forms of official credentials, both include a serial number and photo of the IRS employee. Taxpayers have the right to see each of these credentials.
- A legitimate revenue officer helps taxpayers understand and meet their tax obligations. The officer will explain the liability to the taxpayer, along with the consequences of failing to comply with the law. The IRS employee will not make threats nor demand an unusual form of payment for a nonexistent liability.
- Visits by revenue officers generally occur after numerous contacts by mail about an existing tax issue; taxpayers should be aware they have a tax issue when these visits occur.
- If someone has an outstanding federal tax debt, the visiting officer will request payment but will provide a range of options, including paying by check written to the U.S. Treasury.
- More information on identifying legitimate IRS representatives and how to report scams can be found at IRS.gov.
Source: IRS News Wire