Jessica L. Jeane, J.D.
Managing Director, Public Policy
President Biden has signed an Executive Order (EO) effectively requiring new IRS online tools and services.
The White House on December 13, 2021, issued the Executive Order on Transforming Federal Customer Experience and Service Delivery to Rebuild Trust in Government. The EO aims to address the “time tax” burden placed upon Americans as they interact with the Federal Government. “The Federal Government must design and deliver services in a manner that people of all abilities can navigate,” the EO states.
Most notably, Sec. 4(b) of the EO mandates the following:
“The Secretary of the Treasury shall design and deliver new online tools and services to ease the payment of taxes and provide the option to schedule customer support telephone call-backs. The Secretary of the Treasury should consider whether such tools and services might include expanded automatic direct deposit refunds based on prior year tax returns, tax credit eligibility tools, and expanded electronic filing options.”
While the EO does not specifically name the IRS, the agency would be required to provide such enhanced taxpayer services.
This executive action comes on the heels of NSA’s letter to Congress and the IRS last month urging more transparency and communication with taxpayers and practitioners. “Often, taxpayers and practitioners either cannot reach the IRS or receive confusing and inaccurate information, NSA wrote. “Frustrations within the tax and accounting professional community are at an all-time high, and fears among practitioners about how the upcoming 2022 tax filing season will unfold, when many 2019 and 2020 tax returns remain unresolved, are based firmly in reality.”
Additionally, House Republicans sent a December 9 letter to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig sharing many of NSA’s previously stated concerns and requesting prompt answers to the following questions:
- What is the IRS’s plan to process the paper returns from previous seasons before the official start of the 2022 filing season?
- How is the IRS working to resolve issues with returns that were suspended during the 2021 season?
- Is the IRS back to work regularly in person? If not, how is it working to bring employees back and provide a safe environment?
- Will the agency use existing authority to hire extra non-enforcement employees to help process tax returns?
- How will the IRS alleviate burdens of taxpayers who have 2020 or 2021 tax returns that won’t be processed by the beginning of the 2022 filing season?
The lawmakers requested answers from the IRS by December 17, 2021.
NSA represents members who provide accounting, auditing, tax preparation, financial and estate planning, and management services to thousands of individuals and business clients across the nation. Most members are sole practitioners or partners in small- to medium- size accounting firms. For more information, visit www.nsacct.org.#IRS#Advocacy#Tax