4.22.4  Examination of NRP Cases-Area Office

Manual Transmittal

January 08, 2013

Purpose

(1) To update the National Research Program IRM to include guidance and procedures for the Individual reporting compliance studies and to clarify/modify the IRM section numbering to differentiate between reporting compliance studies of Individual and Business returns.

Material Changes

(1) To update the NRP exclusion request criteria to include victims of identity theft.

Effect on Other Documents

IRM section 4.22.4 has been updated for tax year 2011 returns.

Audience

SB/SE Examiners and LB & I Revenue Agents, Group Managers and Territory Managers assigned NRP returns.

Effective Date

(01-08-2013)


Director, Office of Research
Janice Hedemann

4.22.4.1  (11-15-2012)
Introduction

  1. The Service needs reliable compliance measures to determine what key areas of noncompliance to address and what treatments to apply to maximize the use of its limited resources. Data to meet these needs are necessary. An innovative and efficient approach that is less burdensome to taxpayers is necessary to measure the extent of noncompliance and to identify factors related to noncompliance. Additionally, it is necessary to identify areas where taxpayer education is needed and clarity of forms, instructions, and publications can be improved.

  2. The National Research Program (NRP) approach maximizes use of data available to the IRS and, to the extent possible, minimizes intrusiveness and taxpayer burden while collecting data.

  3. The following examination guidelines have been established for conducting NRP Area examinations. Note: This IRM section supersedes all other IRM provisions for the purpose of examining NRP returns.

4.22.4.2  (11-15-2012)
Program Responsibility

  1. This section defines the program responsibility.

4.22.4.2.1  (11-15-2012)
Headquarters

  1. For the Individual and S Corporation studies, the NRP Office, SB/SE, and LB&I will manage and monitor NRP operations, and provide guidance and assistance as needed.

4.22.4.2.2  (11-15-2012)
Area Office

  1. Area Directors and LB&I Directors of Field Operations have responsibility for NRP examinations within their areas.

  2. Territory Managers have responsibility for NRP examinations within their territories.

    1. NRP managers and examiners will receive NRP training to ensure quality examinations are conducted and correct and complete NRP examination data is entered.

    2. Only examiners who complete NRP training will work NRP cases.

    3. The number of NRP examiners appointed will be sufficient to handle the NRP workload.

    4. Qualified examiners at appropriate grade levels will be assigned NRP cases.

  3. The Area Planning and Special Programs Territory Manager will coordinate NRP within the Area, including, but not limited to, receipt, control, and assignment of NRP returns. The PSP TM will monitor and report on the status of the Area program, approve transfer of cases and have second line authority for approval/disapproval of exclusion requests.

  4. Group Managers and Case Managers are responsible for NRP cases within their groups, including timely assignment of NRP cases, and counseling examiners on the scope and requirements of these examinations. (See Auditing Standards in IRM 4.10 and the Scope and Depth for NRP cases in this IRM at 4.22.4.4.1). They are also responsible for maintaining a workflow throughout the entire examination cycle that ensures timely completion, as well as minimizing the number of submissions based on estimated information. To ensure the quality of NRP examinations, managers should review cases according to procedures outlined in this IRM.

4.22.4.3  (11-15-2012)
NRP Study Cycle

  1. Each NRP study has a time frame for completion. The time frame for completion will be communicated to Area Offices for each study.

  2. Following the conclusion of NRP studies, Area Offices, in coordination with Area NRP Coordinators, will communicate comments on the study to the NRP Office. These comments should include any recommended changes for future studies, taxpayer reactions to the program and ways of accomplishing NRP with reduced taxpayer and examiner burden. For on-going NRP studies comments should be provided as necessary.

4.22.4.3.1  (11-15-2012)
Receipt of NRP Cases

  1. NRP returns contain most case building related items in an electronic format. Hardcopy documents in the case file are limited to a copy or original return, the NRP case building checksheet, the F5546 AIMS chargeout document, any available IRP documents for joint files, along with miscellaneous documents NRP might receive prior to classification such as amended returns, TAS inquiries, etc. All other case building documents are included in the file electronically in the Case File Documents Folder in RGS.

  2. Upon receipt of NRP case files, the NRP Coordinator will verify that case files are complete and that they agree with the accompanying transmittal list. If case files are incomplete, the NRP Coordinator will secure missing data to complete the case files or examiners may be provided with instructions to secure missing data.

  3. After verification, the original and one copy of transmittal lists should be signed and dated on each page by the Area NRP Coordinator. Receipt of cases must be acknowledged within five workdays after receipt in the Area Office.

4.22.4.3.2  (11-15-2012)
Processing of NRP Cases

  1. NRP cases are processed as part of the normal examination workload unless otherwise specified herein.

4.22.4.3.3  (11-15-2012)
Assignment of Cases

  1. After receipt of cases from the Campus, the Area NRP Coordinators will assign cases to NRP Examination Groups as quickly as possible.

  2. After receipt of cases from the NRP Coordinator, Group Managers and Case Managers will assign cases to examiners as quickly as possible.

  3. NRP examinations will only be conducted by examiners who have completed the required NRP training. NRP examinations should be completed promptly without sacrificing quality.

4.22.4.4  (11-15-2012)
Examination of Returns

  1. Examinations of NRP returns should be face-to-face. Exceptions to this will be made after concurrence by management on a case by case basis. There will be no surveys before or after assignment unless certain exclusion criteria are met.

  2. Examinations will be conducted consistent with existing examination guidelines unless they conflict with instructions contained herein. If conflicts arise with existing examination guidelines, NRP guidelines take precedent. An exclusion should be requested if any of the conditions found in section 4.22.4.4.6 of this IRM apply.

  3. In addition to the exclusion criteria in this IRM, there are several systemic conditions that will require the exclusion of certain taxpayers from the NRP sample. This includes taxpayers who were audited during the prior TCMP/NRP audit cycles and the Earned Income Credit (EIC) Compliance Study audits.

  4. Procedures for requesting exclusions of NRP cases are in 4.22.4.4.6 of this IRM.

  5. If the examiner finds that an examination cannot be conducted for reasons other than those listed in this IRM, the Area NRP Coordinator should be notified. The NRP Coordinator will contact the NRP Office and determine if the NRP case can be excluded from the study.

  6. Where possible, field examinations should be performed at the taxpayer's place of business to permit actual observation of the taxpayer's business facilities and extent of operations.

  7. Examiners should follow Required Filing Checks (IRM 4.10.5 Required Filing Checks) and determine that all required related returns and prior/subsequent year returns were filed. When establishing ERCS/AIMS control for pick-up of prior/subsequent year returns or related returns, Source Code 91 and Project Code 0674 should be used. Additionally, a Tracking Code may also be assigned depending on the type of return and tax year under examination. See sections of this IRM that deal with specific studies for any additional requirements.

  8. If indications of fraud are discovered during the examination of an NRP or related return, a referral should be made in accordance with IRM 25.1. The referral is labeled an NRP case. Such identification is necessary so that the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) can recognize it as being an NRP return. If the case is accepted for joint investigation and a reasonably accurate estimate of the results cannot be made during the NRP examination period, the NRP Office will provide additional guidance.

  9. If an NRP return crosses Operation Divisions, procedures outlined in the Memorandum of Understanding dated October 2005 between LB&I and SBSE should be followed.

  10. When an examiner determines or is notified that an NRP and/or any related return is being controlled by the Partnership Control System (PCS), the examiner should contact the agent working the related case to find out when reliable information can be expected concerning adjustments that affect the NRP examination. Follow-up should be made periodically to ensure that reliable information is provided timely.

  11. Area Counsel will be alerted immediately in all instances involving summons enforcement regarding an NRP case. The NRP Office will be informed by memorandum of such cases as soon as they arise.

  12. All problems not specifically covered in this section will be resolved jointly by the NRP Office, SB/SE and LB&I.

4.22.4.4.1  (11-15-2012)
Scope and Depth of Examinations

  1. Importance of NRP Results - Because NRP results are used to develop or update formulas for scoring returns as to their probability for additional tax or additional income, it is essential that examinations be thorough. Examiners should remain mindful of causing undue burden for the taxpayer.

  2. Scope of Examination - Every classified item must be examined. An inquiry or an inspection of records and documents must be made for all classified line items. If an examiner has a question on the rationale utilized by the classifier, he or she should refer to IRM Section 4.22.3, Classification of NRP Cases.

    1. Expansion of Audit Scope - If the examination reveals changes to any of the classified items, the examiner should consider expanding the examination to include other items, if any, on the return or supporting schedules. NRP selection is not a basis for expanding the scope of an examination, if the examination was in process prior to the return being designated by NRP. For any return closed (particularly related "pick ups" ) prior to its designation as an NRP return, an NRP report will be completed based on the results of such examination if the NRP Office determines the results are valid for study purposes.

    2. Related Entity Examinations - If a related entity is classified, the examiner should follow the required filing checks procedures. If the related entity is not examined, the examiner should document why it was not examined and no-change the issue on RGS. If the related entity is deemed worthy of examination, the examiner needs to timely request controls on the related return and open an examination on that entity. If the related entity is outside the group control, the examiner will follow the procedures outlined in the IRM for collateral examinations.

  3. Depth of Examination - Examiners must use their professional judgment concerning the depth of examination required for any particular item on the tax return bearing in mind the research nature of the examination. See IRM 4.22.4.4.2.

    1. Examiners should use professional judgment regarding the depth of examination of an issue. The depth of the examination of a NRP examination is the same as is used in field audits. NRP taxpayers must not be held to a higher standard or more in-depth audit procedures.

    2. Issues should be perused to the depth necessary to reach a support- able conclusion. Oral testimony may be accepted in appropriate situations. (See IRM 4.10.7, Issue Resolution).

  4. Mandatory Probes - At a minimum, some inquiry or inspection of records and documents supporting reported or possible unreported income, deductions, and credits must be made.

    1. In the examination of all NRP cases, examiners should be equally alert to discovering unreported income, as well as allowing taxpayers any additional deductions or credits to which they are entitled. Given the variety of taxpayers and types and sources of income and deductions, it is not practical to give specific guidelines for the scope and depth of such inquiry. This is a matter of judgment in each case. (For minimum income probes, please refer to IRM 4.10.4).

    2. For individual studies or to determine the living standards of related shareholders, examiners should be familiar with appropriate indirect methods used for determining unreported income and the techniques used during income probes.

    3. Individual study NRP examinations require that a Cash-T is completed as part of the financial analysis. If the Cash-T shows a potential for unreported income, another appropriate indirect method should also be considered. Information on the minimum income probes is contained in IRM 4.10.4.3 (Examination Techniques). Additionally, IRM 4.10.3 outlines examination techniques for certain small businesses and other resources (such as the Audit Technique Guides) are available.

  5. Required Workpaper Documentation - All classified issues and any issue added as a result of the examination should be documented on the Lead Sheet including what action was taken to fulfill the requirements of an NRP examination. All Lead Sheets must be prepared electronically and included in the RGS case file as an attachment to the applicable issue or in the Office Documents folder. Lead Sheets must contain the adjustment amount, audit procedures and conclusion.

    1. Audit procedures and conclusions for each issue audited must be supported by written comments in the workpapers. This is necessary to ensure that the statistical data gathered for NRP is accurate and complete.

    2. For items not specifically adjusted or commented on the Form 4549 (RAR), state what actions were taken to fulfill the requirements of the NRP examination. This statement should be tailored to the taxpayer’s individual operation. For example, if the general ledger was scanned for items not specifically adjusted or commented on the Form 4549, the examiner should so state on the lead sheet for those issues.

    3. Examiners must describe what inquiry or inspection of records or documents was made to verify reported or possible unreported income, deductions, and credits.

    4. The workpapers must describe how it was determined that there is no unreported taxable income.

  6. Individual Study Lead Sheets - Tax Year 2006 returns required that a supplemental questionnaire be completed. The supplemental questionnaire required access to a separate on-line application and answers to various questions submitted by external stakeholders. This often required answering the same question twice (once in the case file and again on the questionnaire). For Tax Year 2007 and forward the supplemental questionnaire has been eliminated and the questions added to NRP Mandatory Lead Sheets.

    1. NRP Mandatory Lead Sheets are all presented in an Excel format and designed so that information entered by the examiner can be extracted and provided to the stakeholder requesting the information. Information on how to access and complete the Lead Sheets is provided in the training material and the Lead Sheets. The following is a list of the NRP Mandatory Lead Sheets and the NRP additional interview question workpaper:

      (1) 110 - NRP Audit Plan This Lead Sheet replaces the former 105-NRP Administrative Lead Sheet and is mandatory for all NRP cases. This Lead Sheet is applicable for both RA and TCO users and replaces the respective audit plan Lead Sheets used in field examinations. NRP data capture items have been incorporated into the field version of the Lead Sheet. Significant changes were made to the Schedule D data capture items in relation to securities transactions. Refer to the NRP additional interview questions for information you need to obtain form the taxpayer.
      (2) 130 - NRP Multi-Year and Related Return Lead Sheet - This Lead Sheet has additional questions to ask employers about financial interests in foreign countries, the reporting of bonuses, awards etc. on Forms W-2 and 1099 as well as questions on the treatment of workers as independent contractors.*
      (3) 200 - NRP Internal Controls Lead Sheet - Required for taxpayers with a Schedule C, E or F. This Lead Sheet has been modified to capture information about the taxpayer’s use of electronic records, point-of-sale software and receipt of electronic payments.
      (4) 400-2 NRP E- Business Workbook- has sections (tabs) for Internet Lead Sheet, Website Review, E-Records Analysis, Online Sales, Online Auction, Online Gambling and Bartering.
      (5) *125-2.1- NRP Additional Interview Questions - This provides a list of additional questions that can be asked in order for the NRP Mandatory Lead Sheets to be completed accurately.
    1. All NRP examiners and managers should be familiar with the required lead sheets and issue specific lead sheets discussed in training. In addition, they should be aware of the requirements for preparing effective lead sheets also discussed in training.

      (6) 615 NRP 1040 Examiner Case Closing Checksheet and 615 NRP 1040 Group Manager Case Review Checksheet.
    1. All NRP examiners and managers should be familiar with the required lead sheets and issue specific lead sheets used in NRP examinations.

4.22.4.4.2  (11-15-2012)
Evaluation of Books and Records

  1. The research nature of these examinations requires care in evaluating evidence. Evidence tends to prove a fact or point in question.

  2. NRP examiners should gather facts to determine the accuracy of any item classified for examination. This determination should include all the facts supporting both sides of an issue.

  3. Documentary evidence is emphasized in the conduct of an NRP examination. Records kept contemporaneously with the occurrence of an event generally reflect accurately of that event. Books of original entry should be obtained if they exist. The contemporaneous records, invoices, bank statements, cancelled checks, and any other documents to support the books and records should be inspected to a depth adequate to support the accuracy of those books and records.

  4. In situations where contemporaneous books and records do not exist or are incomplete, secondary written records (e.g. copies of original documents obtained from third parties) or other reconstructions of records, if credible, may be used.

  5. Oral testimony by a taxpayer is direct evidence which must be thoroughly considered. The degree of reliability placed on a taxpayer's oral testimony must be based on the credibility of the taxpayer and the surrounding circumstantial evidence.

  6. Oral testimony by other than the taxpayer may also be credible if that person has first hand knowledge of the facts and circumstances.

  7. The steps to obtain evidence and the evaluation of it should be documented in the issue's workpapers.

  8. The guidelines contained in IRM 4.10.7.3, Evaluating Evidence, should be utilized to make reasonable determinations in NRP examinations.

4.22.4.4.3  (11-15-2012)
De Minimis Adjustments

  1. Due to the research nature of NRP examinations, de minimis adjustments will be captured within RGS on the key case examination only.

  2. To simplify de minimis adjustment procedures for individual studies, examiners should make all adjustments, even small ones, and include them in the examination report. No adjustments should be categorized as de minimis nor should the de minimis reason code be used in RGS.

    1. If the deficiency is less than $200, the examiner can choose not to issue a report with a balance due. If the deficiency is less than $200, you will receive a message "Balance Due is less than $200. Do you want to set the deficiency amount to zero?" when running the RGS Tax Computation. If you do not wish to issue a report or wish to issue a de minimis report, Click "Yes" to generate a de minimis report. Although the report will reflect a $0 deficiency, the total corrected tax liability in the RGS data record will reflect your changes. As a reminder, the deficiency amount includes the Earned Income Credit (EIC), the Additional Child Tax Credit and Credit for Federal Tax Paid on Fuel but does not include pre-payment credits. An electronic copy of the report is required to be included in the Case File Documents in RGS.

    2. Whenever the examiner decides to issue a report with de minimis changes and no balance due, the correct Disposal Code is 01 (No Change with Adjustments). See IRM Exhibit 4.4.1-16.

  3. For studies of S Corporation returns, if an examiner makes de minimis adjustments, the examiner will:

    1. Use the RGS memo entry to capture the de minimis adjustments.

    2. Not produce two reports (for determining the tax impact of the de minimis adjustments).

    3. Not carry the de minimis adjustments down to the shareholder/partner level.

4.22.4.4.4  (11-15-2012)
General Instructions for Wrong-Line Adjustments

  1. Do NOT adjust "WRONG-LINE" entries unless it is necessary for RGS to calculate the proper tax liability.

  2. Wrong-Line Adjustments occur when a taxpayer reports an amount on the wrong line of the tax return. They include:

    1. Decreasing an amount that was reported (solely or as part of a larger amount) on the return and then allowing the amount elsewhere on the return.

    2. Decreasing an amount that was reported (solely or part of a larger amount) on the return and then allowing that amount split among two or more line items.

    3. Use RGS Reason Codes "10" or "14" to describe all Wrong-Line Adjustments.

    Example A: $1000 of Real Estate Taxes reported (along with other taxes) on Schedule C1 Line 23 should have been reported on Schedule A Line 5. Because RGS requires that both Schedule C and Schedule A be adjusted so that Self-Employment tax and income tax can be correctly calculated by RGS, the examiner should make both adjustments.

    Example B: $15,000 of Net Long Term Capital Gain from Partnerships reported on Schedule D Line 12 should have been reported as $12,000 of Net Short Term Capital Gain from Partnerships on Schedule D Line 5 and $3,000 of Taxable Interest income on Form 1040 Line 8a. The examiner should make all of these adjustments so that RGS can calculate the corrected Schedule D tax.

  3. Wrong-Line Adjustments do not include:

    1. Increasing an amount that was reported (solely or as part of a larger amount) on the return. If the increase relates to an amount that was reported by the taxpayer on the wrong line, make the adjustment to the correct line.

    2. Decreasing an amount (solely or as part of a larger amount) that was reported on the return and not allowing any of the amount elsewhere on the return. Make the adjustment to the line where the amount was reported.

    3. Increasing or decreasing an amount as a result of adjustment(s) made to another return (prior/subsequent or related).

    4. Do not use RGS Reason Codes "10 " or "14" to describe these adjustments.

      Example C: $5,000 of Supplies Expense reported on Schedule F Line 30 should have been reported as Repairs Expense on Schedule F Line 27 but is otherwise deductible as a business expense. The examiner discovers an additional $1,250 of Repairs Expense not previously reported by the taxpayer. Only one adjustment is necessary. Repairs Expense, Schedule F Line 27 should be increased by $1,250. It is not necessary to make the $5,000 Wrong-Line Adjustment to Supplies because tax (income and SE) would not be affected.

      Example D: $500 of Other Expense reported on Schedule C Line 27 was for Legal Expenses that would normally be reported on Schedule C Line 17. The examiner determines, however, that $300 of the $500 was for personal services and not deductible. Other Expenses on Schedule C Line 27 should be decreased by $300. It was not necessary to make a Wrong-Line Adjustment for the other $200 of Legal Expenses because tax (income and SE) would not be affected.

      Example E: $12,000 of Rental Income reported on the taxpayers spouse’s return (spouse reported filing status of married filing separately) should have been reported instead by the taxpayer. The examiner increases the amount reported by the taxpayer on Schedule E Line 2a by $12,000. The examiner also makes an adjustment to the spouse’s return reducing Rental Income by $12,000. Neither of these adjustments would be considered a Wrong-Line Adjustment.

  4. Guidelines for making Wrong-Line Adjustments include:

    1. For each affected return line item, don’t combine Wrong-Line Adjustments with other adjustments. If necessary, add issues in RGS to capture the Wrong-Line Adjustments separately. Note: It’s OK to combine other adjustments (to the same line) into one issue.

    2. Use RGS Reason Codes "10" or "14" , as appropriate, to describe all Wrong-Line Adjustments

    3. The sum of Wrong-Line Adjustments made to the NRP key case should equal zero.

    Example F: The taxpayer reported $17,500 for Schedule C Line 18, Office Expense. The issue was identified for examination and the examiner determined the $7,500 (including $250 of Cash Contributions) was not ordinary and necessary business expense. For the identified issue, the examiner would make an adjustment of $7,250 and use an appropriate reason code (other than "10" or "14" ). The examiner would also add two issues; one decreasing Schedule C Line 18 by $250 and one increasing Schedule A Line 15, Cash Contributions, by $250. The examiner would use Reason Code "10" or "14" to describe these two adjustments.

  5. Cases with flow-through income and expenses to other entities have special considerations. Form 1065, Form 1120S, and Form 1041 provide for items of income and expense to be distributed as ordinary income or (loss) and as separately distributed items (per Schedule K-1 and return attachments). In completing a report for examination changes at the conduit level, the examiner should not reflect changes that are in name only and used to determine ordinary income or (loss). If changes result in adjustments to the distributed items which could (based on statutory limitations and other requirements at the shareholder/partner level) affect tax liability, then the examiner should make those adjustments and use the appropriate RGS Reason Code "10" or "14."

  6. Even though Wrong-Line Adjustments may not affect the determination of taxable/ordinary income, their true nature can have a definite effect on the determination of tax liability for the NRP return or the shareholder associated with the NRP return. These changes (such as those to Self-Employment Tax, Minimum Tax, Earned Income Credit, etc.) should be reflected on the report. In addition, changes should be made to misclassified items on 1040s that could result in changes to the shareholder return due to statutory or other limitations at the recipient's level.

4.22.4.4.5  (11-15-2012)
Transfers

  1. Occasionally NRP examinations must be transferred from the Campus to an Area Office, or transferred from an Area Examination Group to another group in the same or a different Area Office. This will occur if:

    1. A taxpayer moved after the return was filed.

    2. The books and records are located in another Area or territory.

    3. The place of business is located in another Area or territory.

    4. The taxpayer requests a face-to-face audit.

    5. The Service finds it necessary for efficiency purposes.

  2. A completed Form 3185 (Transfer of Return) with "NRP study cycle" clearly entered in the "Comments" section should be used to transmit NRP cases and any related data to the transferee Area. Form 3185 should be addressed to the transferee Area NRP Coordinator. The transfer package must be routed through the Area NRP Coordinator for review and updating of control records. The Area NRP Coordinator should establish local procedures for expediting transfers, both into and out of the Area.

  3. Upon receipt of the NRP package, the receiving Area must acknowledge receipt by updating the NRP control system and by signing and acknowledging Form 3210. The transferring Area NRP Coordinator should review the Forms 3210 periodically to see if the "Acknowledgment Copy" of the Document Transmittal (Form 3210) has been received. If it has not been received within 30 days, follow-up action should be taken by contacting the transfer-out clerk within the Area and, if necessary, the receiving Area NRP Coordinator. In addition, the Area NRP Coordinator should review the "Transfer Pending" report on the NRP control system periodically to see if any cases are being transferred into the Area. If a case is not received within 30 calendar days of the "Sent" date, the transferee Area NRP Coordinator should contact the transfer-in clerk within the Area and if necessary, the transfer-out Area NRP Coordinator to ensure transfer completion.

  4. Formal discussions between the transferor and transferee Areas are strongly recommended, particularly prior to the six-month transfer cut-off for the study if applicable. This will eliminate questionable transfers.

4.22.4.4.6  (11-15-2012)
Exclusions

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    9. ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡

  2. To request the exclusion of a key case return, submit a completed Form 4981, NRP Exclusion Request. If additional information is needed to complete Form 4981, attach a memorandum to the form.

  3. For cases that meet exclusion criteria, the examiner completes Items 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 of Form 4981, NRP Exclusion Request. Type or print in Item 1, the Document Locator Number (DLN), Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), taxpayer’s name, and NRP sample code. List in Item 6 (Reason for Exclusion) sufficient information for Headquarters to properly evaluate the request. The Form 4981 is forwarded to the Area/Campus NRP Coordinator along with any supporting documentation. A copy of Form 4981 is retained at the group level (Exhibit IRM 4.22.4-1).

  4. The Area NRP Coordinator will review the facts and circumstances to determine if the criteria for exclusion have been met. If the NRP Coordinator determines the criteria are met, the information will be sent forward for a decision. The Individual key case remains part of the study until the examiner is notified by the NRP Coordinator that a permanent exclusion has been approved. In all cases, the final approval will be made by the National NRP Coordinator. If a request for exclusion is anticipated because the taxpayer cannot be located, the examiner will refer to IRM 4.10.2.7.2.2 for the mandatory steps required to locate taxpayers. The examiner must use Form 1900B (Unlocatable Taxpayer Checksheet) to document actions taken. Upon submission of the NRP exclusion request for an unlocatable taxpayer, the examiner will attach a copy of the completed Form 1900B to the Form 4981. The original Form 1900B will be retained in the case file.

  5. If a permanent exclusion is approved and the key case return (Source Code 80) is closed Survey Before Assignment (Disposal Code 31) or Survey After Assignment (Disposal Code 32), it must be sent to the Area NRP Coordinator to complete the closing process. The Source Code, Project Code and Tracking Code should not be changed. These returns will still contain NRP Freeze Code 3 which must be removed by the NRP Coordinator prior to closing the return to Centralized Case Processing. If there are Source Code 91 (NRP Related) returns, they may be closed using operational procedures and need not be closed to the NRP Coordinator.

  6. If the approved excluded key case return (Source Code 80) will still be examined but not be part of the National Research Program, the examiner will delete references to NRP in the case file and on the return. The return will retain AIMS Source Code 80 as the source of the return. The examiner will remove the NRP case folder. The NRP Coordinator may remove the NRP Project Code and any NRP Tracking Code at the Area’s discretion. The Area NRP Coordinator will remove NRP Freeze Code 3 from the return and will coordinate moving the case to the examiner’s Area RGS file server. The examiner will continue the audit using their Area RGS file server. The return will be processed under normal examination procedures and will not need to be closed to the Area NRP Coordinator.

4.22.4.5  (11-15-2012)
Disposition of all NRP Documents

  1. Following are procedures for disposing of completed NRP Examination Records and those with "Estimated" examination results.

4.22.4.5.1  (11-15-2012)
Completed NRP Examination Records

  1. NRP Examination Records include:

    1. EOAD files extracted by the NRP Coordinator from RGS data records produced by examiners for NRP selected returns and

    2. NRP questionnaires completed by Area Office examiners.

  2. NRP examination records must be transmitted to the Detroit Computing Center (DCC) and all data errors corrected before the study completion date.

  3. If the case was previously transmitted to DCC as an estimated NRP Examination Record, remove the "E" in the EOAD Study Type field before transmitting the final NRP examination results.

4.22.4.5.2  (11-15-2012)
Transmission of Electronic Data to Austin/Detroit Computing Center (DCC)

  1. Examiners of NRP returns will upload completed RGS audit records to their manager via the NRP RGS LAN server.

  2. Managers will review the cases and forward the audit records to the NRP Coordinator using Status Code 41.

  3. NRP Coordinators will:

    1. Complete a procedural review of the case file.

    2. Download (merge) the completed RGS audit records onto their workstations,

    3. Run the EOAD conversion program to extract the EOAD file for each RGS data record,

    4. Transmit the EOAD file to DCC,

    5. Review DCC produced on-line reports of data consistency test errors, if any,

    6. Determine and make appropriate corrections to the RGS data record, and

    7. Repeat steps b) through f) as necessary.

4.22.4.5.3  (11-15-2012)
Data Consistency Checks of NRP Examination Records

  1. To help ensure that data collected by examiners is consistent, DCC will test all NRP data submitted by Area Offices and the Campus. The data consists of EOAD data extracted from RGS files as well as examiner responses to the NRP questionnaire (if one is used for the study). To be consistent, data should meet certain expected results. Example: If the examiner identifies Schedule C1, Line 16 as an issue, records $5,000 as the "Per Return" amount, and records $1,000 as the "Adjustment" amount, DCC will compare the EOAD "Per Return" amount ($5,000) with the corresponding amount on the NRP database. If the amounts are not the same (within a reasonable tolerance), DCC will question the accuracy of the schedule and line reference.

  2. For tests that fail, DCC will contact the NRP Coordinator and provide the identity of the test and values of variables used by the test. The NRP Coordinator will verify the accuracy of the questioned data and transmit any necessary corrections to DCC. If the NRP Coordinator is unable to resolve the discrepancy, they will call or return the case to the group. Upon receipt of the corrections, DCC will rerun the consistency tests and, if the data pass all tests, notify the NRP Coordinator that the audit data for the particular case are consistent.


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