1.11.10 Interim Guidance Process

Manual Transmittal

April 15, 2019

Purpose

(1) This transmits revised IRM 1.11.10, Internal Management Documents System, Interim Guidance Process.

Material Changes

(1) IRM 1.11.10.1.4 (2) - Clarified IMD tracking database currently houses both active and archived interim guidance memoranda.

(2) IRM 1.11.10.1.5 - Added terms and acronyms for Official Use Only and Personal Identifiable Information.

(3) IRM 1.11.10.2(4) - Revised the effective period of SERP IPUs from one year to two years for uniformity with the effective period of interim guidance memoranda.

(4) IRM 1.11.10.2(6) - Clarified language on the methods for clearing interim guidance. No procedural changes.

(5) IRM 1.11.10.3.1 - Moved subsection content on Clearance and Approval of Interim Guidance from 1.11.10.5.3, as guidance applies to both IG memos and IPUs.

(6) IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1 - Moved subsection content on Affected Offices/Reviewers from IRM 1.11.10.5.3.3, as guidance applies to both IG memos and IPUs.

(7) IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2 - Moved subsection content on Specialized Reviewers from IRM 1.11.10.5.3.4, as guidance applies to both IG memos and IPUs. Revised conditions for forwarding an IPU containing new or substantially revised OUO content to PGLD for review and added an exception. Updated guidance to require use of Form 2061 and Form 13709 to document PGLD’s review of IPUs.

(8) IRM 1.11.10.5.3 - Added definitions and examples to clarify this subsection. No procedural changes.

(9) IRM 1.11.10.5.3.1(2) - Added language clarifying OUO content changes must be approved by program director per Delegation Order 11-1.

(10) IRM 1.11.10.6(1) - Updated effective period of IPUs from one year to two years.

(11) IRM 1.11.10.6(4) - Clarified language on the review and approval by affected offices, specialized reviewer and the approving official per IRM 1.11.10.6.1.

(12) IRM 1.11.0.6(8) - Clarified that review and approval documentation of IPUs must be attached to the associated IRM clearance file when forwarded to the IRS Historical library after IRM incorporation and publication.

(13) IRM 1.11.10.6.1- Added definitions and examples to clarify this subsection.

(14) IRM 1.11.10.6.1.1(2) - Added language clarifying OUO content changes must be approved by program director per Delegation Order 11-1.

(15) IRM 1.11.10.6.1.2(6) - Added language clarifying OUO content changes must be approved by program director per Delegation Order 11-1.

(16) IRM 1.11.10.6.3(2) - Updated the effective period for IPUs of two years. Clarified language on when IPUs can be reissued.

(17) IRM 1.11.10.7- Clarified the requirement to retain records documenting the review and approval of IG memos and IPUs and the forwarding of these files to IRS Historical Research Library when the guidance is incorporated into the IRM.

(18) Editorial changes made throughout the IRM section including updating "Electronic Reading Room" to "FOIA Library" on IRS.gov.

Effect on Other Documents

IRM 1.11.10 dated January 25, 2018 is superseded on the effective date of this IRM section.

Audience

All personnel responsible for issuing procedural guidance including interim guidance - program directors, managers, Internal Management Document (IMD)/IRM coordinators, Interim Guidance (IG) coordinators, authors and reviewers in all IRS organizations.

Effective Date

(04-15-2019)

James R. Bolling
Director, Office of Servicewide Policy Directives and Electronic Resources
Research, Applied Analytics and Statistics

Program Scope and Objectives

  1. Purpose: This IRM section provides requirements, information and instructions for preparing and issuing interim guidance (IG). It also addresses the IRS’ responsibility for transparency of operations under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) relating to administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff issued through interim guidance. These rules apply to official, written communications that provide procedural instructions and guidance to employees.

  2. Audience: The procedures in this IRM section are primarily for:

    • IRM authors

    • Analysts who issue procedural interim guidance including IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs)

    • Program managers, directors and executives responsible for issuing procedural guidance

    • Internal Management Document (IMD) coordinators

    • Interim Guidance (IG) coordinators

  3. Policy Owner: The Office of Servicewide Policy, Directives and Electronic Resources (SPDER) within Research, Applied Analytics and Statistics (RAAS).

  4. Program Owner: Director, SPDER.

  5. Primary Stakeholders: All business units and functional offices who are responsible for issuing, creating, or maintaining procedures, guidance or instructions are stakeholders. Privacy, Governmental Liaison and Disclosure (PGLD), Disclosure is responsible for program oversight of FOIA for the IRS.

  6. Contact Information: To request information, recommend changes or make any other suggestions to this IRM section, contact SPDER@irs.gov.

Background

  1. The IRM is the official source of IRS policy, authorities, operations and procedures for IRS managers and employees. The interim guidance process was established to quickly communicate instructions to employees before the affected IRM can be updated or to convey temporary or pilot procedures. The interim guidance process meets the FOIA requirement for transparency of IRS operations to the public. To remain in force and effect, the guidance must be incorporated into the IRM.

Authority

  1. 44 USC 3101, Records Management by Federal Agencies requires federal agencies to make and preserve records documenting organizational structure, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, and essential transactions of the agency.

  2. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 USC 552 (a)(2)(C), provides public access to agency administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff affecting a member of the public unless protected from disclosure by an exemption under 5 USC 552(b). FOIA, as amended in 1996, requires these agency records be available to the public in an electronic form. This provision of the FOIA law requiring electronic disclosure of information is referred to as E-FOIA. IRS complies with this E-FOIA provision by posting content to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

Roles and Responsibilities

  1. The Director, Servicewide Policy Directives and Electronic Resources (SPDER) under the Research Applied Analytics and Statistics (RAAS) organization is responsible for oversight of the IMD program including interim guidance of the IRS.

  2. Executives of each IRS organization are responsible for the content and management of interim guidance affecting their business programs.

  3. IRS program directors who manage a program, policy, process or procedure are responsible for authoring, maintaining, distributing, and archiving interim guidance. IRS program directors are also responsible for retaining their interim guidance documents (hardcopy and electronic) in accordance with the General Records Schedules, Document 12829 for administrative related records and the IRS Records Control Schedules, Document 12990 for records accumulated by organizations/business units within IRS.

  4. IG coordinators are responsible for managing the interim guidance for their organization. See IRM 1.11.1.6.7.3, IG Coordinator.

  5. Authors who prepare and write interim guidance must follow the rules and processes within this IRM section.

  6. PGLD, Disclosure is responsible for program guidance on FOIA oversight and disclosure of sensitive content.

  7. SPDER staff is responsible for the posting and removing of identified interim guidance documents meeting E-FOIA to/from the FOIA Library on IRS.gov through Online Service (OLS) requests.

Program Controls

  1. Program Reports: SPDER issues an annual state of the IMD program memorandum that provides a servicewide perspective on the IMD program. The reports include program activity and compliance data on interim guidance issued by each organization.

  2. The IMD Tracking system is a database that houses active and archived interim guidance memoranda. IMD Tracking reports assist in managing the interim guidance program.

Terms and Acronyms

  1. The following table lists the definitions and acronyms used throughout this IRM section.

    Term Definition
    Affected Offices Program offices whose work processes, procedures, official forms or IMDs require revision due to proposed changes to procedures.
    Emergency Interim Guidance Critical guidance requiring immediate issuance to employees where a delay would result in work stoppage, incorrect processing of account data or would severely impact taxpayer actions. Examples include disaster guidance, critical changes to IRS procedures, or newly enacted legislation.
    Electronic Freedom of Information Act (E-FOIA) A federal law (5 USC 552(a)(2)(c)) requiring public availability in an electronic format of instructions to employees affecting a member of the public.
    Interim Guidance (IG) Official communication conveyed through memoranda or IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs) used by organizations or program offices to convey immediate, emergency or temporary changes to operations or procedures for a defined effective period.
    Interim Guidance Memorandum (IGM) A type of interim guidance used to issue an immediate or temporary procedural change to IRM procedures or operations in a memorandum. The procedural change is effective until the expiration date, not to exceed two years.
    Internal Management Document (IMD) Official communications that designate authorities and/or disseminate instructions to staff for IRS officials and employees.
    Internal Management Document (IMD) Tracking System A database that houses active and archived interim guidance memoranda.
    IRM Procedural Update (IPU) A type of interim guidance used to issue an immediate or temporary procedural change to an IRM posted on SERP. The change is effective for two years.
    IRM Online An electronic version of all the published and effective IRM sections with links to active interim guidance.
    Official Use Only (OUO) Sensitive information requiring protection from the public due to the risk and magnitude of loss or harm to the IRS or the privacy to which individuals are entitled under 5 USC 552a. See IRM 11.3.12, Disclosure of Official Information, Designation of Documents.
    Personally Identifiable Information (PII) Information that can be used to distinguish or trace an individual’s identity, either alone or when combined with other information that is linked or linkable to a specific individual. See IRM 10.5.1.2.3.
    Program Director Management official with responsibility and authority for administering a particular program and the issuance and approval of interim guidance within their authority.
    Program Owner The office which has responsibility for establishing the policy, process and procedures necessary to implement and manage an IRS program. The program owner is the IRM owner for the program.
    Servicewide Electronic Research Program (SERP) An electronic portal maintained by W&I housing an electronic version of mainly W&I owned IRMs and other resources for W&I employees.
    Specialized Reviewers Identified program offices with oversight in a particular area affecting servicewide IRS operations. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2.
    Temporary Guidance Guidance for limited time period, up to two years. Temporary guidance may or may not be associated with procedures in the IRM. Examples of temporary guidance include pending tax legislation which is subject to change or a pilot program which is being tested.

Related Resources

  1. For a listing of organizational IG coordinators, see http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/Resources/IMDContacts.asp.

  2. Interim Guidance web page at http://imdtrack.web.irs.gov/Search.asp contains active and archived interim guidance memoranda.

  3. Interim Guidance on the IRS.gov FOIA Library at https://www.irs.gov/privacy-disclosure/interim-guidance-by-irs-business-process houses active interim guidance meeting E-FOIA.

  4. SPDER IMD Community webpage at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/authors/ contains job aids related to interim guidance authoring, clearance and format.

  5. The E-FOIA decision tool assists employees in determining whether the guidance affects a member of the public and requires posting to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/ig/E-FOIA/Decide/.

  6. Interim Guidance training - ELMS number 28327.

Interim Guidance Standards

  1. Interim guidance (IG) is an official communication used by organizations to quickly issue new, revised or temporary instructions, procedures or operational changes to employees. Interim guidance is used when immediate issuance to employees is required and there is insufficient time to update, clear and publish the IRM. It is also used to convey pilot or temporary procedures. To remain in force, procedures must be incorporated into the IRM within the effective period.

  2. Program responsibility: The program owner of the content is responsible for the coordination, review, approval and issuance of interim guidance. Each program office may create internal processes to comply with and/or supplement the procedures in this IRM. An Interim Guidance (IG) Coordinator for each organization assists in managing their IG. A listing of current organizational IG Coordinators are posted on the SPDER site at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/Resources/IMDContacts.asp.

  3. Format: Interim guidance may be issued in either of the following formats:

    1. Interim Guidance Memorandum. See IRM 1.11.10.5, Interim Guidance (IG) Memoranda; or

    2. Servicewide Electronic Research Program (SERP) IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs). See IRM 1.11.10.6, SERP IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs).

  4. Effective Period: Interim Guidance is in effect through the stated expiration date on the guidance. If there is no stated expiration date, then the guidance is in effect for two years from the date of issuance.

    Note:

    IG may be reissued in limited circumstances when the related IRM cannot be updated within the effective period. See IRM 1.11.10.5.6, Reissuing Interim Guidance Memoranda and IRM 1.11.10.6.3, Reissuing IPUs.

  5. E-FOIA Evaluation: Program owners issuing instructions to employees outside the IRM, such as IG memoranda or IPUs, are responsible for complying with the FOIA, 5 USC 552(a)(2)(C). Each IG must be evaluated to determine if the instructions to staff affect a member of the public unless protected from disclosure by an exemption under 5 USC 552(b). IG subject to disclosure under E-FOIA must be posted to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. See IRM 1.11.10.4, Evaluation of Interim Guidance for E-FOIA.

  6. Clearance: The purpose of interim guidance is to issue guidance to employees rapidly. If the guidance needs to be issued to employees immediately to continue IRS operations, the clearance may be streamlined to meet the needs of IRS operations.

    1. Emergency guidance is critical guidance requiring immediate issuance to employees where a delay in issuance would result in a work stoppage, incorrect processing of account data, or would severely impact taxpayer actions. Examples include disaster guidance, newly enacted legislation or critical change to IRS procedures. Follow the emergency IG clearance procedures in IRM 1.11.10.5.3.1 for IG memoranda and IRM 1.11.10.6.1.1 for IPUs.

    2. Guidance which informs employees of an important procedural change but does not require immediate issuance follows the standard interim guidance clearance procedures. Examples include temporary, pilot guidance or non-critical procedural changes. Follow the clearance procedures in IRM 1.11.10.5.3.2 for IG memos and IRM 1.11.10.6.1.2 for IPUs.

  7. Approval: The signatory for an interim guidance is the director of the respective program (or above). The director may redelegate their authority to a designee, but must do so in writing. The director is ultimately responsible for the correctness of the content. Furthermore:

    1. Interim guidance containing official use only (OUO) must be approved by an official who has the delegated authority under Delegation Order 11-1, Administrative Control of Documents and Material.

    2. If the content is identified as meeting E-FOIA and requires posting to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov, the director (or designee) also approves the posting to the FOIA Library.

  8. Distribution: The program owner is responsible for distributing interim guidance to all affected employees.

  9. IMD tracking system: All interim guidance memoranda and IPUs meeting E-FOIA must be posted to the IMD tracking system. See IRM 1.11.10.5.4.1 and IRM 1.11.10.6.2.1 for actions on posting IG memos and IPUs to the IMD Tracking system.

Interim Guidance Process

  1. The following table summarizes the steps involved in issuing interim guidance, whether the guidance is issued as an IG memo or IPU:

      Process IRM Reference
    1. Determine if IG applies IRM 1.11.10.2, Interim Guidance Standards
    2. Author IRM 1.11.10.5.1, Authoring Interim Guidance Memoranda
    IRM 1.11.10.6, SERP IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs)
    3. Evaluate for E-FOIA IRM 1.11.10.4.1, E-FOIA Criteria
    4. Clear and Approve IRM 1.11.10.5.3, Clearance and Approval of Interim Guidance Memoranda
    IRM 1.11.10.6.1, Clearance and Approval of IPUs
    5. Distribute IRM 1.11.10.5.4, Distributing Interim Guidance Memoranda
    IRM 1.11.10.6.2, Distributing IPUs
    6. For IG meeting E-FOIA, post IG to IRS.gov IRM 1.11.10.5.4.1, Posting IG Memoranda to the IMD Tracking and FOIA Library on IRS.gov
    IRM 1.11.10.6.2.1, Posting IPUs Meeting E-FOIA to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov
    7. Incorporate IG into the IRM IRM 1.11.10.7, Rules for Incorporating Interim Guidance into the IRM
    8. Remove/Archive IG IRM 1.11.10.8, Removing and Archiving Interim Guidance

Clearance and Approval of Interim Guidance

  1. Interim guidance is cleared based on the urgency of issuing the guidance to employees.

    Type of Interim Guidance: Definition: Follow: Examples:
    Emergency Interim Guidance Critical guidance requiring immediate issuance to employees where a delay in issuance would result in a work stoppage, incorrect processing of account data, or would severely impact taxpayer actions IRM 1.11.10.5.3.1, Emergency Clearance Process for IG Memoranda
    IRM 1.11.10.6.1.1, Emergency Clearance Process for IPUs
    Disaster guidance, newly enacted legislation or a critical change to IRS procedures
    Standard Interim Guidance Guidance which informs employees of an important procedural change but does not require immediate issuance IRM 1.11.10.5.3.2, Standard Clearance Process for IG Memoranda
    IRM 1.11.10.6.1.2 Standard Clearance Process for IPUs
    Temporary, pilot guidance or non-critical procedural changes
  2. The originating office must retain the clearance documents, significant reviewers' comments, approval and the changes for historical record keeping purposes. When the related IRM is published, the IG clearance documents must be included in the IRM file sent to the IRS Historical Research library. IRM 1.11.10.7, Rules for Incorporating Interim Guidance into the IRM.

Affected Offices/Reviewers
  1. Affected offices are program offices whose procedures, processes, forms, or documents require revision or alteration as a result of the proposed changes.

  2. Send interim guidance to a known subject matter expert or contact within the affected program office(s). If a specific subject matter expert is not known, forward the request to the organization’s IMD Clearance Point of Contact.

Specialized Reviewers
  1. Specialized reviewers are identified program offices with oversight in a particular area affecting servicewide IRS operations. Review from the following specialized reviewers is required in the circumstances below.

    When the interim guidance contains: Then send to: IRM Subsection
    Legal matters as described in IRM 1.11.9.4.1 Chief Counsel via email to IRM.Clearance.Counsel.Review@IRSCOUNSEL.TREAS.GOV IRM 1.11.9.4.1
    For IG memoranda:
    • Official Use Only (OUO) content, questionable OUO content, or prior (de-designated) OUO content;

    • Procedures, policies, or instructions relating to the disclosure or potential disclosure of official information; or

    • Procedures, policies, or instructions relating to privacy or information protection.


    For IPUs:
    • New OUO content, questionable OUO content, substantially revised OUO content, or prior (de-designated) OUO content;

    • Procedures, policies, or instructions relating to the disclosure or potential disclosure of official information; or

    • Procedures, policies, or instructions relating to privacy or information protection.

      Exception:

      IPUs containing unchanged OUO content reviewed by PGLD within the last 12 months or editorial changes including tolerance amounts or grace periods DO NOT require review through PGLD.

    PGLD via email to *PGLD IMD SPOC

    Note:

    Forward a Form 2061 and a completed Form 13709 along with the clearance request to PGLD.

    IRM 1.11.9.4.2
    For IG memoranda: Content affecting any of the following IRM Parts:
    • Part 1 – Organization, Finance, and Management

    • Part 3 – Submission Processing

    • Part 4 – Examining Process

    • Part 5 – Collecting Process

    • Part 7 – Rulings and Agreements

    • Part 8 – Appeals

    • Part 20 – Penalty and Interest

    • Part 21 – Customer Account Services

    • Part 22 – Taxpayer Education and Assistance

    • Part 25 – Special Topics


    For IPUs: Content changes affecting how a member of the public files, pays, complies with their tax requirements or interacts with the IRS.
    Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) via email to *TAS IMD SPOC. IRM 1.11.9.4.3
    Changes to the working conditions or job duties of bargaining unit employees Workforce Relations (WR) contact via email. See http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/authors/WRPOCList.asp for current contact. IRM 1.11.9.4.4
    • An IRS toll-free telephone number

    • Instructions on developing or revising taxpayer notices or letters

    • Guidance on handling erroneous taxpayer correspondence

    Office of Taxpayer Correspondence (OTC) via email to *W&I OTC IMD POC. IRM 1.11.9.4.6
    Procedures relating to:
    • Implementation of new legislation affecting tax administration, or

    • Interactions with Congress or a member of Congress (e.g., a U.S. Representative or a Senator)

    Legislative Affairs contact via email. See http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/authors/IMDClearancePOCList.asp for current contact. IRM 1.11.9.4.5
    Content relating to identity theft Identity Protection - W&I Office of Identity Protection via email to *W&I CAS:AM:IPSO-IDT-IRMs. IRM 1.11.9.4.7

Evaluation of Interim Guidance for E-FOIA

  1. Program owners issuing instructions to staff outside the IRM, such as IG memoranda or IPUs, are responsible for complying with the FOIA, 5 USC 552(a)(2)(C) and ensuring the document is posted on the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

  2. The FOIA act requires administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff affecting a member of the public, unless protected from disclosure by an exemption under 5 USC 552(b), be available to the public in an electronic form. This provision of the FOIA law requiring electronic disclosure is referred to as E-FOIA. IRS complies with this law by posting content to the IRS.gov FOIA Library web page.

  3. The author is responsible for evaluating the interim guidance content to determine if the guidance meets the conditions under the FOIA law and requires posting to the FOIA Library page on IRS.gov. See IRM 1.11.10.4.1, E-FOIA Criteria.

    1. If the author determines an IG memorandum meets the E-FOIA conditions, the author includes a notation that memo will be posted to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. See IRM 1.11.10.5.2, Interim Guidance Memoranda - Format, IRS.gov Notation. After final signature, the author forwards the memoranda to their organizational IG coordinator for uploading to the IMD Tracking system and posting to the IRS.gov FOIA Library.

    2. If the author determines the changes in an IPU meets the E-FOIA conditions, the author identifies the change(s) meeting the E-FOIA criteria in the SERP submission form. The SERP staff forwards the IPU changes meeting E-FOIA to the respective organizational IG Coordinator for posting to the IRS.gov FOIA Library. See IRM 1.11.10.6.2.1 for additional guidance for IPUs.

  4. Authors can use the E-FOIA Decision Tool at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/ig/E-FOIA/Decide/ for assistance in determining whether guidance meets E-FOIA criteria and requires posting to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. For additional assistance, consult a Disclosure liaison at https://portal.ds.irsnet.gov/sites/vl003/Lists/DBasicsContacts/DispItemForm.aspx?ID=4.

E-FOIA Criteria

  1. Authors evaluate interim guidance for the following conditions. If all the conditions are met, identify the guidance as E-FOIA requiring posting the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

    1. The guidance is procedural and communicates direction, guidelines, or standards to employees in the performance of their assigned duties.

    2. The guidance affects how a member of the public files, pays, complies with their tax requirements, or interacts with the IRS.

    3. The guidance is not exempt from disclosure under 5 USC 552(b). See IRM 1.11.10.4.1.1, Disclosure Exemptions for Instructions to Staff.

  2. If the guidance is a restatement of content already posted on the FOIA Library on IRS.gov, then it is not necessary to post the interim guidance on the FOIA Library. For example, if the procedural change is the same language contained in an Internal Revenue Bulletin posted on the FOIA Library, then the interim guidance does not require posting as the guidance is already electronically available to the public. This situation is atypical, as interim guidance is instructions to employees whereas an IRB is information for taxpayers.

Disclosure Exemptions for Instructions to Staff
  1. Instructions to staff that affect a member of the public must be made public unless the information is exempt under 5 USC 552(b). IRM 11.3.13.7.2, Exemptions lists the nine FOIA exemptions.

  2. Of the nine exemptions, generally only 5 USC 552(b)(7)(E) applies to instructions to staff. 5 USC 552(b)(7)(E) exempts content which if disclosed could reasonably be expected to permit circumvention of the law by a member of the public. This content is designated by the IRS as Official Use Only (OUO) and does not require disclosure.

  3. If interim guidance contains OUO information and non-OUO information, the OUO information is redacted (removed) and the remaining non-OUO content is accessible to the public, unless the remaining content is meaningless. See IRM 11.3.12.2.1, Official Use Only.

  4. OUO content must be properly marked by the author, reviewed by the Office of Disclosure and approved by the official under Delegation Order 11-1, Administrative Control of Documents and Material. See PGLD under Specialized Reviewers in IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2 below for instructions on requesting Disclosure’s review.

Interim Guidance Memoranda

  1. The following subsections provide instructions on authoring, issuing and clearing interim guidance (IG) memoranda.

  2. The originator of the IG works with the program owner, management and IG Coordinator to adhere to internal processes when issuing interim guidance.

  3. The IMD Tracking system at http://imdtrack.web.irs.gov/Search.asp provides online access to active and archived interim guidance memoranda.

Authoring Interim Guidance Memoranda

  1. Write the new or revised procedures using plain language conventions. Plain language is clear, concise and well-organized writing, appropriate to the subject and intended audience.

  2. Follow the IRM format and numbering rules described in IRM 1.11.2.3. Write content in the IRM format and numbering convention based on the current published IRM section. Specify the affected IRM subsection, title, paragraphs and lists and the new effective date.

  3. Guidance must specify:

    • What changed

    • Which employees must take action

    • Procedures and/or actions as a result of the change

    • Reason for the change

    • Affected IRM subsection(s)

  4. Obtain a unique “control number” from your organization’s IG Coordinator. See IRM 1.11.10.5.2 for IG memo control numbers.

  5. Ensure content is correct and does not contradict existing procedures, processes or laws. Ensure content contains no live taxpayer data. See IRM 1.11.2.5.6.

  6. Follow Section 508 compliance accessibility standards. See the Section 508 Compliance and Accessibility at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/resources/508.asp for guidance on 508 compliance.

  7. Identify and mark sensitive information as official use only (OUO) in accordance with IRM 11.3.12.2.1, Official Use Only. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2 , Specialized Reviewers as OUO content must be reviewed by PGLD and approved by the Program Director.

  8. Determine if the guidance meets E-FOIA conditions. See IRM 1.11.10.4.1 for the determination of E-FOIA and IRM 1.11.10.5.4.1 for the actions on posting IG memos to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

  9. Coordinate and share the changes with IRM authors whose IRM sections contain the guidance in question. Also share the guidance with organizations who own IRS products (e.g. forms, training) affected by the guidance.

  10. If the guidance is based on new legislation or a new process or procedure where there is no related IRM section, identify the proposed IRM section as "proposed" in the document. Refer to IRM 1.11.2.4.1, rules for requesting a new IRM section.

  11. If the guidance is a permanent change in process or procedure, begin revising the IRM section as soon as the interim guidance is issued and prior to its expiration date.

  12. Retain records documenting all IRM changes, the review and approval, and any significant comments for historical record keeping purposes. See IRM 1.11.10.7, Rules for Incorporating Interim Guidance into the IRM on sending records to the IRS Historical Research library when the guidance is incorporated into the IRM.

Interim Guidance Memoranda - Format

  1. Include the following elements in IG memoranda. A sample IG memorandum is available on the SPDER web site at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/ig/InterimGuidanceMemorandumTemplate.doc.

    Element Definition Example
    Date of Issuance Date the memorandum is being issued to employees June 1, 2014
    Control Number Organization symbols - IRM Part Number - Month - Year -Sequential tracking number.
    The sequential tracking number restarts at the beginning of the calendar year.
    LB&I-04-0614-0001
    LB&I issued its first interim guidance memorandum for IRM Part 4 on June 1, 2014.
    Affected IRM Number The primary IRM section number which relates to the interim guidance. If the guidance is temporary or the IRM is not yet published, state this in the body of the memorandum. Include the proposed IRM section number as "Proposed New IRM X.XX.X" . IRM 4.43.1
    Audience Indicate the end user in the MEMORANDUM FOR line.
    List the Chief, Director or heads of office responsible for the employees who are to follow the guidance.
    MEMORANDUM FOR SPECIALTY EXAMINATION
    Subject Indicate in the SUBJECT line a concise statement of the subject matter. Changes to Retail Industry Examinations
    Originator/Office Indicate in the FROM line the originating office and title. Director, Retailers, Food, Pharmaceuticals & Health care Industry, LB&I
    Expiration Date Include the date the interim guidance expires, not to exceed two years. June 1, 2015
    IRS.gov Notation If the guidance meets the E-FOIA conditions (See IRM 1.11.10.4.1, E-FOIA Criteria) include a "cc" or "Distribution" notation to indicate it is posted on the FOIA Library. cc: IRS.gov
    Content Write content using the IRM format and numbering convention; specifying each affected IRM subsection, title, paragraphs and lists and new effective date. See IG Memo Template Attachment at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/ig/InterimGuidanceMemorandumTemplate.doc

Clearance and Approval of Interim Guidance Memoranda

  1. Interim guidance is cleared based on the urgency of issuing the guidance to employees. Use the following table to determine whether your guidance meets the conditions for streamline emergency interim guidance clearance. If not, follow the steps for standard clearance.

    Type of Interim Guidance: Definition: Follow: Examples:
    Emergency Interim Guidance Critical guidance requiring immediate issuance to employees where a delay in issuance would result in a work stoppage, incorrect processing of account data, or would severely impact taxpayer actions IRM 1.11.10.5.3.1, Emergency Clearance Processfor IG Memoranda Disaster guidance, newly enacted legislation or a critical change to IRS procedures
    Standard Interim Guidance Guidance which informs employees of an important procedural change but does not require immediate issuance IRM 1.11.10.5.3.2, Standard Clearance Process for IG Memoranda Temporary, pilot guidance or non-critical procedural changes
Emergency Clearance Process for IG Memoranda
  1. Use Form 2061, Document Clearance Record or Form 14074, Action Routing Sheet to document the review and approval of the IG memorandum. See Exhibit 1.11.10-3 for how to prepare Form 2061 for interim guidance.

  2. Obtain approval from the program director or documented designee and any other stakeholder as determined by the program owner. For new or changed OUO content obtain approval from the program director in accordance with Delegation Order 11-1, Administrative Control of Documents and Material.

  3. Distribute the IG memorandum based on procedures in IRM 1.11.10.5.4, Distributing Interim Guidance Memoranda.

  4. Simultaneous to issuance, email affected offices and specialized reviewers. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1, Affected Offices/Reviewers and IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2, Specialized Reviewers for determining affected and specialized reviewers for IG. Attach the revised procedures and state in the email message the reason the guidance requires immediate issuance.

  5. Address comments received and respond promptly to any significant issues. If comments necessitate revision, revise and reissue the new guidance as soon as practical.

Standard Clearance Process for IG Memoranda
  1. Use Form 2061, Document Clearance Record or Form 14074, Action Routing Sheet to document the review and approval of the IG memorandum. See Exhibit 1.11.10-3 for how to prepare Form 2061 for interim guidance.

  2. Email the IG memorandum to affected offices and specialized reviewers for review and concurrence. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1, Affected Offices/Reviewers and IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2, Specialized Reviewers for determining affected and specialized reviewers for IG.

    1. Specify the due date for review; less than 30 calendar days but at least 3 business days based on the date employees must follow the guidance. Accept or deny any requests to extend the review due date.

    2. For sample emails, see the SPDER IMD web page under Clearance at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/authors/clear.aspx.

  3. Address comments received and consider any significant issues.

  4. Elevate non-concurrences to the program director, who will determine if the guidance should be issued.

  5. If the IG is issued without resolving the disagreement, the author will address and reconsider the disagreement prior to republishing the affected IRM.

  6. Obtain approval from the program director or documented designee. For new or changed OUO content, approval from the program director is required. See Delegation Order 11-1, Administrative Control of Documents and Material.

  7. Follow procedures in IRM 1.11.10.5.4, Distributing Interim Guidance Memoranda.

Distributing Interim Guidance Memoranda

  1. The program owner is responsible for distributing IG to all affected employees. Distribution involves notifying employees about any procedural changes. IG is communicated to employees by email, posted to internal websites and posted to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov, if the guidance is determined to meet E-FOIA criteria.

  2. Before distribution, including posting to websites, the IG memoranda must be:

    1. Compliant with 508 accessibility requirements. For assistance see SPDER Section 508 Compliance web page at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/resources/508.asp or the Alternative Media Center at http://amc.enterprise.irs.gov/ .

    2. Converted to a non-alterable static format, such as a portable document format (PDF), to ensure it cannot be modified.

    3. If the memoranda contains official use only (OUO) information, the content is properly marked to restrict OUO content and securely transmitted. Follow procedures in IRM 11.3.12.2.1, Official Use Only.

  3. Once the interim guidance is uploaded to the IMD Tracking system the memoranda is automatically available and searchable on the IRS intranet. See IRM 1.11.10.5.4.1, Posting IG Memoranda to the IMD Tracking System and to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

Posting IG Memoranda to the IMD Tracking System and to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov
  1. Within seven (7) calendar days of the date the director or designee approved and signed the IG memoranda, the organization’s IG coordinator uploads the IG to the IMD Tracking system:

    1. Uses information from the issued IG memoranda to complete the necessary fields in the IMD Tracking system. Exhibit 1.11.10-2 contains a listing of required data and data fields.

    2. Uploads a 508 compliant PDF file of the IG memorandum.

    Note:

    If the guidance contains attachments, consolidate all attachments into one PDF file.

  2. If the guidance meets E-FOIA Criteria, the IG coordinator:

    1. Confirms the guidance meets E-FOIA criteria and requires posting to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

    2. Inputs a summary of the guidance (300 characters or less) in the IMD Tracking system.

    3. For guidance containing OUO, creates a second PDF file removing OUO content and uploads both the original PDF file and the redacted PDF file.

  3. After the IG coordinator uploads the file(s), the IG memo is automatically available on the IMD Tracking web page.

  4. For IG identified as meeting E-FOIA, the SPDER office will submit the guidance for posting through a Content Management Request within seven (7) calendar days of receiving the interim guidance. The SPDER representative emails the respective IG coordinator when the memo has posted to the FOIA Library IRS.gov page - Recent Interim Guidance to Staff.

  5. The SPDER office grants the organizational IG coordinator access to the IMD Tracking system to upload and remove interim guidance. Send an e-mail to SPDER@irs.gov to obtain access.

Monitoring Interim Guidance Memoranda

  1. The program owner is responsible for ensuring their staff:

    1. Monitors the expiration date of IG memoranda.

    2. Revises the affected IRM section and/or reissues the guidance prior to the interim guidance expiration date of the IG memoranda, and

    3. Contacts their organizational IG coordinator to update the IMD Tracking system so the superseded or expired interim guidance is archived on the intranet and removed from IRS.gov, if applicable.

    Note:

    Failure to monitor and clearly label interim guidance could mislead employees into following outdated guidance; treating taxpayers inconsistently and /or creating administrative or taxpayer burden.

  2. The IRM author is responsible for:

    1. Updating the affected IRM section to incorporate the changes into the IRM prior to expiration. If the interim guidance is still valid and cannot be incorporated into the IRM prior to the expiration date, the author will request a reissuance. See IRM 1.11.10.5.6, Reissuing Interim Guidance Memoranda.

    2. Notifying the IG coordinator within seven (7) calendar days from the date the guidance has been superseded, incorporated into the IRM, or no longer in use in order to remove/archive the guidance from the intranet and IRS.gov.

  3. The IG coordinator:

    1. Manages their organization's interim guidance.

    2. Uses the IMD Tracking system to upload all IG memoranda issued by their organization within seven calendar days of signature and approval. If the IG memoranda is identified as meeting the E-FOIA criteria, indicate this in the IMD Tracking system in order for the SPDER office to post this IG memoranda on the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. See IRM 1.11.10.5.4, Distributing Interim Guidance Memoranda.

    3. Uses the IMD Tracking system to request the removal of IG memoranda from the IMD Tracking System and from the FOIA Library on IRS.gov when required. See IRM 1.11.10.8, Removing and Archiving Interim Guidance.

    4. Serves as a resource to assist with E-FOIA determinations.

    5. Monitors the expiration date of IG memoranda.

    6. Sends notification to IG authors on soon to expire interim guidance.

    7. Assists author with obtaining approval for reissuance, if IG is not incorporated into a published IRM before the IG expires.

  4. The IMD Tracking System assists with monitoring the age of the interim guidance. Reports are available to identify interim guidance at certain intervals within 30, 60, 90, and 120 calendar days of expiring.

Reissuing Interim Guidance Memoranda

  1. In rare instances and for continuity of operations, IG may need to be reissued. The Director of Servicewide Policy, Directives and Electronic Research (SPDER) approves IG requiring reissuance. Reissuing IG is not encouraged. The program owner should make it a priority to incorporate the new guidance into the IRM before the expiration date.

  2. Examples warranting reissuance include:

    1. Pending legislation, National Treasury Employee Union (NTEU) negotiations, rulings or guidance from Counsel impacting the IRM

    2. Delays due to M&P publishing

    3. Delays in resolving issues that surfaced during the IRM clearance process

    4. Extension of a pilot program

  3. The author or IMD coordinator takes the following actions to obtain approval:

    1. Emails their program manager for approval of reissuance and copies their organizational IG coordinator.

    2. Emails a request to the Director of SPDER at *SPDER@IRS.gov

    3. Indicates the IG control number, the affected IRM number and title.

    4. Attaches a copy of the existing IG.

    5. Explains the reason(s) for the extension.

    6. Specifies the date the IRM is expected to be updated.

  4. If the request is approved by the Director of SPDER, the issuing organization will:

    1. Request a new control number from the IG coordinator

    2. Issue a new memorandum with a new date and control number.

    3. Reference the prior issued interim guidance.

    4. Specify in the memorandum the date the procedures will be incorporated into the affected IRM.

    5. If necessary, clear the memoranda through affected offices and specialized reviewers per IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2, Specialized Reviewers.

SERP IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs)

  1. Program owners who host their IRMs on SERP are required to use IRM Procedural Updates (IPUs) to issue interim changes to IRM procedures. IPUs are effective up to two years from issue date. See IRM 1.11.8, Servicewide Electronic Research Program.

  2. An IPU revises or corrects existing IRM information posted to SERP. All other IRM formats including the officially published version available to the public are not updated.

  3. IPUs are created by revising the IRM XML file. See IRM 1.11.8.7.1, Updating IRMs through an IRM Procedural Update (IPU) for guidance on updating the XML IRM file for IPU submission.

  4. The author obtains review and approval of the changed procedural content through affected offices, specialized reviewers and the approving official in accordance with IRM 1.11.10.6.1, Clearance and Approval of IPUs.

  5. The author must evaluate each change for E-FOIA prior to submission to SERP. See IRM 1.11.10.4.1, E-FOIA Criteria. The E-FOIA Decision Tool under the SERP Author Resource page at http://serp.enterprise.irs.gov/databases/local-sites-other.dr/author-resources/efoia-decision-tool.html assists IPU authors determine whether E-FOIA applies to any of the changes.

  6. If the author identifies any changes meeting E-FOIA, the SERP staff will create an IPU for E-FOIA purposes based on those changes. SERP will forward the E-FOIA IPU to the organization's IG coordinator for posting to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. See IRM 1.11.10.6.2.1, Posting IPUs meeting E-FOIA to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov for the process of posting SERP IPUs to the FOIA Library.

  7. After review and approval, the author completes and submits the SERP IRM Update Submission form in the SERP Submission application and attaches a revised IRM XML file. Follow IRM 1.11.8.7.1.1, Issuing an IPU (Interim Guidance).

  8. The author must retain records documenting all IRM changes, review, approval, and any significant comments for historical record keeping purposes. See IRM 1.11.10.7, Rules for Incorporating Interim Guidance into the IRM.

Clearance and Approval of IPUs

  1. Interim guidance is cleared based on the urgency of issuing the guidance to employees.

    Type of Interim Guidance: Definition: Follow: Examples:
    Emergency Interim Guidance Critical guidance requiring immediate issuance to employees where a delay in issuance would result in a work stoppage, incorrect processing of account data, or would severely impact taxpayer actions IRM 1.11.10.6.1.1, Emergency Clearance Process for IPUs Disaster guidance, newly enacted legislation or a critical change to IRS procedures
    Standard Interim Guidance Guidance which informs employees of an important procedural change but does not require immediate issuance IRM 1.11.10.6.1.2, Standard Clearance Process for IPUs Temporary, pilot guidance or non-critical procedural changes
  2. The author or originating office must retain records to document the changes to instructions, clearance documents, significant reviewers' comments, and approval for historical record keeping purposes. The author or originator saves a PDF of the changes. When the IRM is revised and published to incorporate the guidance, the review and approval documents must be included in the clearance file sent to the IRS Historical Research library. See IRM 1.11.10.7, Rules for Incorporating Interim Guidance into the IRM.

Emergency Clearance Process for IPUs
  1. Use email or other documentation to capture the procedural changes and approval of the IPU.

  2. Obtain approval from the program director or documented designee and any other stakeholder as determined by the program owner. For new or changed OUO content obtain approval from the program director in accordance with Delegation Order 11-1, Administrative Control of Documents and Material.

  3. Complete the submission form in the SERP Submission application and attach a revised track-change IRM XML file. Follow IRM 1.11.8.7.1.1, Issuing an IPU (Interim Guidance).

  4. Simultaneous to submitting the IPU to SERP, email affected offices and specialized reviewers. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1, Affected Offices/Reviewers and IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2, Specialized Reviewers for determining affected and specialized reviewers. Attach the changed guidance (enumerate the changes) and state in the email the reason the guidance requires immediate issuance.

  5. Address comments received and respond promptly to any significant issues. If comments necessitate revision, revise and reissue the new guidance as soon as practical.

Standard Clearance Process for IPUs
  1. Use email or other documentation to capture the procedural changes and approval of the IPU.

  2. Email the proposed changes to the affected offices and specialized reviewers for review and concurrence. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1, Affected Offices/Reviewers and IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2, Specialized Reviewers for determining affected and specialized reviewers.

    1. In the email, specify the due date for review, less than 30 calendar days but at least 3 business days, based on the date employees must follow the guidance. Grant or deny requests to extend the date of the clearance review.

    2. For sample emails, see the SPDER IMD web page under Clearance Email Templates at http://spder.web.irs.gov/imd/irm/clearance.asp.

  3. Address comments received and consider any significant issues.

  4. Elevate non-concurrences to the program director, who will determine if the guidance should be issued.

  5. If the IPU is issued without resolving the disagreement, the author will address and reconsider the disagreement prior to the republishing of the affected IRM.

  6. Obtain approval from the program director or documented designee. For new or changed OUO content, approval from the program director is required. See Delegation Order 11-1, Administrative Control of Documents and Material.

  7. Complete the submission form in the SERP Submission application and attach a revised track-change IRM XML file. Follow IRM 1.11.8.7.1.1, Issuing an IPU (Interim Guidance).

Distributing IPUs

  1. After the author completes and submits the IPU to the SERP office based on IRM 1.11.8.7.1.1, the SERP staff posts the IPU and the changed IRM file to the SERP website. The posting of the IPU to the SERP IRM conveys the distribution of the interim guidance to employees.

  2. If the author determined some or all of the changes in the IPU meet the E-FOIA criteria, SERP will create an IPU for E-FOIA purposes based on the author's determination and will forward the E-FOIA IPU to the respective IG coordinator for posting to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. See IRM 1.11.10.6.2.1, Posting IPUs Meeting E-FOIA to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

Posting IPUs Meeting E-FOIA to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov
  1. Within seven (7) calendar days from when the SERP staff receives the IPU for processing, the SERP staff will forward the E-FOIA version of the IPU to the responsible organization’s IG coordinator via email and copy the originator/submitter of the IPU.

  2. The SERP staff will include in the email a brief summary of the changes (abstract) for the purposes of posting the guidance on the FOIA Library on IRS.gov, the name of the IPU originator/submitter and the approver.

  3. Within seven (7) calendar days of receipt of the IPU, the IG coordinator will:

    1. Upload the IPU to the IMD Tracking system using the information from the IPU and the email from SERP to complete the necessary fields in the IMD Tracking system. Exhibit 1.11.10-2, IMD Tracking System Data Fields for Adding or Archiving IG contains a listing of the required data and data fields.

    2. Indicate in the IMD Tracking system whether the guidance meets E-FOIA criteria and requires posting to the FOIA Library.

    3. Input a summary of the guidance (300 characters or less) in the tracking system for the purposes of posting the IPU on IRS.gov. The summary is viewable on IRS.gov below the title.

    4. Ensure any OUO content is properly designated and redacted in the PDF file. See IRM 11.3.12.2.1, Official use Only for designating OUO content.

    5. Upload a 508 compliant PDF of the IPU. If the IPU contains OUO content, the IG coordinator uploads both the original PDF file and the redacted PDF file.

  4. Within seven (7) calendar days of receiving the interim guidance, the SPDER office will submit the guidance for posting through the Content Management System. After posting, a SPDER analyst emails the respective IG coordinator confirming the document is on the FOIA Library on IRS.gov - Recent Interim Guidance to Staff page.

Reissuing IPUs

  1. IPUs must be incorporated into a published version of the IRM through Media & Publications within two years from the issuance date of the IPU.

  2. In rare instances and for continuity of operations, IPUs may be reissued but it is discouraged.

  3. Examples warranting reissuance include:

    1. Pending legislation, National Treasury Employee Union (NTEU) negotiations, rulings or guidance from Counsel impacting the IRM

    2. Delays due to M&P publishing

    3. Delays in resolving issues that surfaced during the IRM clearance process

    4. Extension of a pilot program

  4. The reissuance of an IPU requires approval from management and from the Director of SPDER.

    Note:

    Obtain management approval first, prior to seeking approval from the Director of SPDER.

  5. See IRM 1.11.8, Servicewide Electronic Research Program (SERP) for guidance on reissuing IPUs.

Rules for Incorporating Interim Guidance into the IRM

  1. The author/originating office must incorporate permanent guidance into a published IRM by the expiration date of the interim guidance. The author follows the instructions in IRM 1.11.2, Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) Process, for authoring the IRM.

  2. When updating the associated IRM to incorporate interim guidance, the Manual Transmittal must include a reference to the interim guidance in both the Material Change and Effect on Other Document fields. The Material Changes must identify the changed guidance, what has changed, and reference the interim guidance. The Effect on Other Document explains that the interim guidance document is superseded by the published IRM. Update the following in the Manual Transmittal:

    1. For each subsection where the guidance has been incorporated include a reference to the interim guidance number(s) and the issue date(s).

      Example:

      Material Changes:
      IRM 21.1.X.1 - Updated/Added content from interim guidance memorandum SBSE-05-0508-XXX, [Title of interim guidance] dated MM-DD-YYYY to update [subject including description of the change].
      IRM 21.1.X.1.X - IPU 11U162X issued MM-DD-YYYY to update [subject including description of the change].
      IRM 21.1.X.2.X - IPU 11U163X issued MM-DD-YYYY to update [subject including description of the change].

    2. Include the interim guidance number(s) and issue date in the "Effect on Other Documents" field.

      Example:

      Effect on Other Documents:
      The following IPUs are incorporated into this IRM: IPU 11U1851, 12U0093, and 12U1378 issued from Month DD, YYYY through Month DD, YYYY.
      This IRM incorporates Interim Guidance Memorandum SBSE-05-0508-107, [Title of interim guidance] dated Month DD, YYYY.

  3. The originating office must retain a copy of the changed guidance, records documenting the review, significant reviewers' comments, and approval documentation for historical record keeping purposes.

  4. When the IRM is revised incorporating the guidance, the author will include the interim guidance clearance documents in the historical file sent to the IRS Historical Research library. See IRM 1.11.9.10.3, Clearance Documents Sent to IRS Historical Research library for additional guidance on forwarding the IRM clearance package to the IRS Historical Research library.

Removing and Archiving Interim Guidance

  1. IG memoranda and IPUs uploaded to the IMD Tracking system must be removed and archived using the IMD Tracking system when the guidance is:

    • Incorporated into an IRM that is published and effective;

    • Reissued by another interim guidance;

    • Superseded by another issued interim guidance;

    • No longer valid, such as temporary or pilot guidance

    Note:

    Expired interim guidance is systemically archived in the IMD web page on the expiration date.

  2. Within seven (7) calendar days from any of the scenarios described in (1) above, the IG coordinator updates the IMD Tracking system to archive the IG, indicating the reason the IG is removed/archived. This systemically notifies the SPDER staff to remove any posted IG from the FOIA Library on IRS.gov.

  3. The author ensures the interim guidance is archived from all sites where it is posted, e.g., the organizational website. For IPUs, the guidance is archived when a subsequent IPU is issued or the IRM file is effective. The author is required to retain the changes and follow their business units record retention procedures.

  4. For interim guidance posted to the FOIA Library on IRS.gov where the guidance has been incorporated into a published IRM section, a link to the IRM section where the guidance now resides is placed on IRS.gov for 30 calendar days. After the 30 calendar days, a SPDER staff member inputs a Content Management Request to remove the abstract and link to the IRM section.

  5. A SPDER staff member forwards a confirmation to the respective IG coordinator to indicate the guidance has been removed from the FOIA Library on IRS.gov

IG Memoranda/IPU Workflow

Step IG Memoranda IPUs Responsible Party
1.
  1. Prepare a memorandum in accordance with IRM 1.11.10.5.1.

  2. If interim guidance contains OUO content, properly mark the content with "#" signs and include a footer to indicate OUO content.

  3. Determine E-FOIA applicability. See IRM 1.11.10.4.1, E-FOIA Criteria.

  1. Prepare an update in accordance with IRM 1.11.8.7.1 by revising your XML file.

  2. If guidance contains OUO content, properly mark the content as OUO with "#" signs using the "restrict" tag or "restrict attribute" .

  3. Revise the IRM XML file with track changes.

  4. Update the Manual Transmittal to capture the changes.

  5. Determine E-FOIA applicability. See IRM 1.11.10.4.1, E-FOIA Criteria and the SERP IPU E-FOIA decision tool.

Author
2.
  1. Assign a control number.

  2. Assist in evaluation of E-FOIA criteria.

Note:

The SERP staff assigns the control numbers for IPUs.

IG coordinator
3.
  1. Forward the IG memoranda to affected offices and reviewers based on IRM 1.11.10.5.3.

  2. Obtain approval. See IRM 1.11.10.2.

  3. Forward approved memo to the organization's IG contact to distribute and post to the organization's website and to add to the IMD Tracking system.

  1. Forward the changes to affected offices and reviewers based on IRM 1.11.10.6.1.

  2. Obtain approval. See IRM 1.11.10.2.

  3. Complete the SERP IRM Update submission form including the E-FOIA determination.

Author
4. Not Applicable
  1. Post the SERP IPU and revised IRM XML file indicating changes on the SERP IRM platform.

  2. Prepare an IPU for E-FOIA.

  3. If the IPU contains OUO content, include a footer to indicate guidance contains OUO.

  4. Forward the IPU containing the changes meeting E-FOIA, the authors name and a summary of the changes (abstract) via email to the organization's IG coordinator.

SERP staff
5.
  1. Within 7 calendar days of issuance, use the IMD Tracking system to upload the approved IG memo.

  2. Indicate whether the IG memo meets E-FOIA in the IMD Tracking system. All IG memos will be added to the tracking system even if they do not meet E-FOIA.

  3. Ensure OUO content is properly designated. If the guidance meets E-FOIA, create a second file where the OUO is redacted.

  4. Convert the IG memo to PDF and ensure it is Section 508 compliant.

  5. Upload a Section 508 compliant PDF. If OUO, upload both the original PDF and redacted PDF files to the IMD Tracking system.

  1. Within 7 calendar days of receipt from SERP, use the IMD Tracking system to upload the IPU meeting E-FOIA.

    Note:

    Currently, only IPUs that meet E-FOIA will be added to the IMD Tracking system.

  2. Indicate whether the IPU meets E-FOIA in the IMD Tracking system.

  3. Ensure OUO content is properly designated. If the IPU meets E-FOIA, create a redacted version of the IPU.

  4. Convert the IPU to PDF and ensures it is Section 508 compliant.

  5. Upload a Section 508 compliant PDF of the IPU to the IMD Tracking system. If the IPU contains OUO content, the IG coordinator will upload both the original PDF file and the redacted PDF file.

IG coordinator
6.
  1. Within 7 calendar days, SPDER submits the IG for posting to the Recent Interim Guidance to Staff page on the IRS.gov FOIA Library website.

  2. Send email confirmation to the organization IG coordinator that the guidance has been posted to the FOIA Library.

  1. Within 7 calendar days, SPDER submits the IG for posting to the Recent Interim Guidance to Staff page on the IRS.gov FOIA Library website.

  2. Send email confirmation to the organization IG coordinator that the guidance has been posted to the FOIA Library.

SPDER Staff
7.
  1. Update and publish the affected IRM as soon as possible prior to the expiration date of the IG.

  2. If permanent guidance cannot be incorporated into the affected IRM section by the expiration date, request approval to reissue the guidance from the management and the Director of SPDER.

  3. Upon approval, reissue interim guidance.

  1. Update and publish the affected IRM as soon as possible within two years of issuance of the IPU.

Author
8.
  1. Within 7 calendar days from when the guidance is incorporated into a published and effective IRM section, superseded by another IG or no longer valid, remove/archive the IG from the organizational website, and update the IMD Tracking system.

  2. If posted to IRS.gov, use IMD Tracking system to request removal from the FOIA Library .

  1. Within 7 calendar days from when the guidance is incorporated into a published and effective IRM section, superseded by another IPU change or no longer valid, update the IMD Tracking system to request archiving of the IPU and removal of the IPU from the FOIA Library.

IG coordinator
9.
  1. Request removal of the IG memo from the IRS.gov FOIA Library website based on the removal request.

  2. If the guidance is incorporated into an IRM, submit a request to update the summary paragraph (abstract) posted on IRS.gov to indicate the guidance now resides in an IRM section. A link to the IRM section remains on IRS.gov for 30 calendar days.

  3. For guidance superseded or reissued by other guidance, or no longer valid, submit a request to remove the IG from the FOIA Library.

  4. Send email confirmation to the organization's IG coordinator.

  5. Request removal of abstract and IRM link from IRS.gov after 30 calendar days.

  1. Request removal of the IPU from the IRS.gov FOIA Library website based on the removal request.

  2. If the guidance is incorporated into an IRM, submit a request to update the summary paragraph (abstract) posted on IRS.gov to indicate the guidance now resides in an IRM section. A link to the IRM section remains on IRS.gov for 30 calendar days.

  3. For guidance superseded or reissued by other guidance, or no longer valid, submit a request to remove the IG from the FOIA Library .

  4. Send email confirmation to the organization's IG coordinator.

  5. Request removal of abstract and IRM link from IRS.gov after 30 calendar days.

SPDER Staff

IMD Tracking System Data Fields for Adding or Archiving IG

The following information is necessary when adding or removing interim guidance from the IMD Tracking System, IG website and the FOIA Library on IRS.gov. Most of the information is obtainable from the IG document itself.

  Field Content
a. Was this content approved by the responsible director or designee? Verify and indicate that the IG was approved by the director or designee
b. Add Action
  • New

  • Reissue

Identify whether the IG is a new IG or a reissuance of previously issued IG memo or IPU (Use drop down list)
c. Control Number Input the IG control number
d. Functional Office Input the name of the functional office issuing the IG
e. Organization Name Input the name of the organization originating the IG (Use drop down list)
f. Document Type Input either Interim Guidance Memo or IPU (Use drop down list)
g. Which IRM does the Interim Guidance relate to? - List the primary IRM number first Input the primary affected IRM section that requires update due to the issued procedures. Secondary IRM sections may also be input into the system.
h. Title of Interim Guidance Subject line of IG memo or IPU (The title is 150 characters or less)
i. Issue Date Date the guidance was issued (Use MM/DD/YYYY format)
j. Effective Date Date the guidance is effective, if not identified on the IG this is the date the guidance was issued (Use MM/DD/YYYY format)
k. Expiration Date Date the IG expires or two years from the issue date, whichever is earlier.
l. Author of Interim Guidance Author of the IG – first name, last name
m. Approver of interim guidance - Individual who approved the interim guidance (Director or designee) Individual who approved the IG – first name, last name
n. Does the guidance meet E-FOIA criteria for posting to IRS.gov? Identify if the IG meets the E-FOIA Criteria
• For IG memos - A notation on the bottom of the IG memorandum of cc: IRS.gov will identify the IG as E-FOIA
• For IPUs – SERP will identify the IPU as E-FOIA in the subject line of the email forwarded to the IG coordinator
o. Abstract

Note:

Required if guidance meets E-FOIA criteria and will be posted to IRS.gov.

A summary (300 characters or less) of the IG content containing the organization and office issuing the guidance, the subject line of the guidance, effective date of the guidance and the IRM section or subsection number associated with the content
p. Does the guidance contain Official Use Only (OUO)/Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU) information? Indicate if the IG contains OUO and/or SBU content
q. If E-FOIA and OUO – Have you created a redacted version of this guidance for posting to IRS.gov? Verify any OUO content is redacted in the PDF file uploaded.
r. I have reviewed this content for IRS.gov posting and it’s accurately redacted as appropriate. Confirm that the content was reviewed and accurately redacted before posting to the IRS.gov FOIA Library.
s. Certify the document being uploaded is PDF and Section 508 compliant Verify the file uploaded is in a PDF format and meets Section 508 compliance standards
t. Remove Requested By Individual requesting the removal of the IG first name, last name
u. Remove On Date Input the date the guidance should be archived from IMD Tracking system, IG website and IRS.gov
v. Remove Action Input the reason for removal/archival (drop down list)
• Remove due to Incorporation into IRM
• Remove due to Reissued interim guidance
• Remove due to Other
w. Removed due to guidance Incorporated into an IRM Identify the IRM number the guidance was incorporated into
x. Removed due to Interim Guidance Reissued Identify the IG control number of the new reissued interim guidance
y. Remove Abstract - Removed due to Other Provide the reason the guidance is no longer valid and should be removed (300 characters or less)

Completion of Clearance Form for Interim Guidance

Form 2061 Field Action
1. Date Originated Enter the date you forward the IG to reviewers
2. Response Due Date Enter a date from 3 business days to 30 calendar days from the date originated. Allow time for the reviewers to adequately review the content based on the scope and any prior informal review or discussion.
3. Expedite Clearance Leave Blank because all interim guidance is expedited.
4. Type of Document Enter Interim Guidance Memo or IRM Procedural Update
5. Identifying Number Enter the IG control number for an IG memo
Enter the related IRM subsection number for an IPU number
6. Document title Enter the subject line of the memo or IPU
7. Originating Contact Enter the author of the IG or IPU
8. Additional Contact Enter the Lead, Manager, or IRM/IMD coordinator for questions relating to the content.
9. Specialized Reviewers Indicate the offices required to review the content in accordance with IRM 1.11.10.3.1.2.
10. External Reviewers Identify the organizations external to your organization required to review the IG. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1 , Affected Offices/Reviewers.
11. Reviewer name The reviewer selects their review assessment, inputs their name, title, office symbols, and provides their electronic signature and date on line 11. Comments are either attached in a separate file or included on the Form 2061.
12. Reviewer’s Management Official If required by reviewer’s organization, the reviewer’s manager inputs their name, title, office symbols, and provides their electronic signature and date on line 12.
13. Identify the Approving Official at a Program Director level (or above). Identify the program director’s name title and symbols. The program director (or designee) inputs their name, title, office symbols, and provides their electronic signature and date on line 13.
14. Internal Reviewers Identify individuals or offices within your organization whose programs, processes and procedures must be revised. See IRM 1.11.10.3.1.1, Affected Offices/Reviewers.
15. External Reviewers List the identified specialized reviewers and program offices as indicated on lines 9 and 10.