Highlights and Updates for the CAP 2022 Application Period

 

Continuation of the modification of the "Open Year" Criteria — Historically, CAP eligibility is limited to taxpayers who do not have more than one filed return and one unfiled return open on the first day of the applicant's CAP year. There are several exceptions to this requirement (e.g., pending Advance Pricing Agreement resolution or Competent Authority Assistance, etc.).

For the 2021 CAP Year, the IRS modified the requirement of "one filed" to allow "two filed" open returns and this modification continues for the 2022 CAP year, while maintaining all existing exceptions to this requirement with one change – the 2017 Section 965 exception has been eliminated. This expanded eligibility requirement offers more flexibility for CAP taxpayers in a year in which many continue to face unprecedented circumstances in their operations or unexpected impacts to their tax posture. The IRS anticipates that the historical open year eligibility criteria of one filed return and one unfiled return open on the first day of the applicant's tax year will apply for the 2023 CAP year.

Tax Control Framework (TCF) Questionnaire  For the 2021 CAP year, only new CAP applicants were required to provide the TCF Questionnaire with the application and this requirement continues for the 2022 CAP year. For returning CAP taxpayers, there will be a discussion at the opening conference regarding internal controls over the tax function. If there are any material changes since the questionnaire was last completed, the taxpayer would then be required to provide an updated questionnaire. Likewise, all taxpayers who have material changes to their tax function during the course of the CAP year, such as a major reorganization, have been acquired, or decide to outsource any part of their tax function will be required to update the questionnaire.

Requirement for US GAAP Audited Financial Statements — CAP differs from a traditional audit in that most examination work in CAP is completed before the tax return is filed. Without a tax return, CAP relies on the review of quarterly and annual financial statements to identify and verify that the correct material tax issues are being reviewed. For this reason and others, CAP eligibility for 2020 was limited to US publicly traded taxpayers that are required to prepare financial statements in accordance with US. GAAP. However, existing CAP taxpayers who are privately-held or foreign-owned were given the opportunity to remain in the program if they made the commitment to provide financial statements prepared in accordance with US GAAP for the entity in CAP. Several existing CAP taxpayers made this commitment and remain a part of the CAP program, while others were unable to make this commitment and are no longer eligible to be in the CAP program.

The eligibility requirement to provide audited financial statements in accordance with US GAAP remains for the 2022 CAP year. However, the IRS will continue to assess this requirement going forward and invites suggestions on viable alternatives in bridging and reconciling the disclosure gap between US GAAP and non-US GAAP reporting.