Contact: Jessica L. Jeane, J.D.
Managing Director, Public Policy
NSA Members See Movement in Their Call to Have the IRS Suspend Certain Automated Notices
But Say More is Needed
Alexandria, VA, January 28, 2022 – Members of the National Society of Accountants (NSA) are seeing movement in their call to have the IRS suspend certain automated notices, but their collective voice can be heard loud and clear, saying: “We need more.”
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on January 27 announced it will implement changes to its operations, which includes suspending automated notices related to returns that are not present in its system but have been credited for payment. According to the IRS, examples of this regularly occur when a paper return has been filed yet remains unprocessed.
The IRS’s continuous issuance of these notices and other automated compliance actions have caused confusion, frustration, and utter chaos for NSA members as well as all other professionals within the tax and accounting community. And while NSA appreciates the IRS considering its proposals and taking this first step in the right direction, it asserts the agency can and should do more.
“NSA is aware that the multitude of IRS issues being experienced by members are related to the challenges brought on by the COVID pandemic, stagnant IRS funding and antiquated IT infrastructure, as well as certain statutory requirements under which the Service must operate,” said NSA CEO Joshua Caulfield. “That said, the IRS must go further in its efforts toward transparency and mitigating related damages by doing what is within its administrative authority to ease the burdens being experienced by taxpayers and tax professionals through no fault of their own.”
NSA’s commitment to working for the tax and accounting professional coupled with the efforts of its volunteer leadership, has led NSA to join with other industry stakeholders to form the Tax Professionals United for Taxpayer Relief Coalition. Notably, NSA and its coalition allies sent a January 14 letter to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig that highlighted member concerns and offered several taxpayer relief proposals, which include:
- Discontinue any automated compliance action until the Service can devote necessary resources to properly and timely resolve a matter.
- Align requests for account holds with the time it takes the IRS to process any penalty abatement requests.
- Offer a reasonable cause penalty waiver, similar to the procedures of a first-time abatement (FTA) administrative waiver, without affecting the taxpayer's eligibility for FTA in future tax years.
- Provide taxpayers with targeted relief from both the underpayment of estimated tax penalty and the late-payment penalty for the 2020 and 2021 tax year.
“It is important for the voices of all of our colleagues and industry professionals to be heard,” said NSA President Marchelle Foshee, CPA. “Together our organizations present a united front offering suggestions for the IRS that would ease financial and administrative burdens on taxpayers, tax professionals, and the Service alike.”
Looking ahead, NSA will continue its work with the IRS, Congress, and industry stakeholders to both communicate and alleviate members’ concerns. To that end, in response to the changes announced by the IRS on January 27, the Tax Professionals United for Taxpayer Relief Coalition released the following statement:
“We appreciate that the IRS has halted ‘automated notices in cases where a payment has been credited to a taxpayer, but no return has been processed.’ This is a good first step in offering relief to taxpayers. However, in our experience, the majority of erroneous notices are a result of numerous other circumstances where taxpayers are crying out for help, especially the underserved and minority communities. The IRS should temporarily suspend all automated compliance actions as they did with the onset of the COVID pandemic. Furthermore, we believe that if all the recommendations made by this coalition are implemented, it will go a long way to help taxpayers, tax practitioners and the IRS better navigate through this difficult tax season. Simply put, more is needed to offer meaningful relief to individuals and small businesses, and we urge the IRS to implement all of our recommendations.”
NSA members are encouraged to attend a coalition Town Hall webcast at 1pm EST on February 8 in which NSA will participate alongside industry stakeholders, representing members’ concerns with IRS service and the litany of issues being carried over into the 2022 tax filing season. In this virtual event, NSA and its coalition allies will discuss the current issues that taxpayers and tax professionals are facing and the steps being taken by the coalition and lawmakers on Capitol Hill to ensure the recommendations are implemented.
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.