IMRS Monthly Overview – June 2012
The IMRS Monthly Overview provides synopses of some of the issues that were received and/or closed by the Issue Management Resolution System staff during the past month. The Monthly Overview is intended to inform the public about the work of IMRS, and highlights the issues that we think would be of most interest to external stakeholders. When the Monthly Overview is posted to IRS.gov, a tweet is posted via Twitter for followers of @IRStaxpros. Sign up to receive notification.
IMRS Issue 12-0001638 – Automated Underreporter CP2000 notices issued for USDA grants properly reported on Form 1040
Issue: Taxpayers who properly reported USDA grants on Form 1040 are receiving Automated Underreporter CP2000 notices for the grant income.
Policy, Practice & Procedures
IMRS Issue 12-0001627 – Incorrect phone number on “Where’s My Refund” page on IRS.gov
Issue: A tax practitioner called to report that the phone number posted on the "Where's My Refund" page on IRS.gov was not functioning.
Response: Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention. An incorrect hotline number was inadvertently displayed on the “Where's My Refund” response for taxpayers receiving reference number 1502. The response has been revised to reflect the correct number of 1-800-829-0582 ext.362.
Issue 12-0001596 – Assessment Statute Expiration Date and Collection Statute Expiration Date information for practitioners
Issue: Procedures were recently changed to allow assistors on the PPS telephone line to release ASED/CSED information when a valid POA is on file, regardless of whether the caller requests any other account related information. Practitioners would like the option of obtaining this information in writing when a valid POA is on file.
Response: On May 18, 2012, the procedures in IRM 21.3.10, Practitioner Priority Service, were updated to allow for written confirmation of an ASED/CSED date when a valid power of attorney is on file.
IMRS Issue 12-0001564 – Release of tax practitioner information under the Freedom of Information Act
Issue: The IRS releases tax practitioner information to the public from the Preparer Tax Identification Number listing under the Freedom of Information Act but does not identify what specific information on the applications is released. As a result, practitioners' personal information such as their home addresses, home phone numbers and home email addresses is being released to the public. Could the IRS make it easy for practitioners to identify what specific information is subject to release under FOIA when they apply for or renew their PTINs?
Response: The Freedom of Information Act requires the IRS to release its agency records unless the information is protected from public disclosure. As a result, vendors and other persons may obtain a list of individuals with preparer tax identification numbers. PTIN holders are not allowed to opt out of the disclosure of their information.
FOIA requires the IRS to release the name, business name, business website address, business phone number, business mailing address, email address and professional credentials of PTIN holders.
The IRS has created guidance on what information is released under FOIA and how PTIN holders can update their contact information. Search “FOIA Awareness for PTIN Holders” on IRS.gov for the details.
The IRS is making changes to the PTIN application to clarify what information may be released under FOIA. The IRS is changing the “Permanent Mailing Address” box on the PTIN application to “Personal Mailing Address” This change clarifies that the information is personal and exempt from public disclosure under FOIA rules.
In addition, the IRS is removing the prohibition on entering a P.O. Box in the “Business Mailing Address” box on the PTIN application. PTIN holders may now enter a P.O. Box as their business mailing address.
Tax practitioners who used a personal mailing address as their business mailing address or used a street address when they would have preferred to provide a P.O. Box as their business mailing address may want to update their contact information. This information is not exempt from disclosure under FOIA rules and will be released even if it is the same as the personal mailing address.
NOTE: Current and previous reports are also available on this site. The monthly overviews are posted for the prior two years through the current month. You can also access reports for issues closed in prior years on the same page. We invite you to raise your issues/concerns with your local stakeholder liaison.