11.4.1 Governmental Liaison Operations

Manual Transmittal

December 05, 2017

Purpose

(1) This transmits revised IRM 11.4.1, Communications and Liaison, Office of Governmental Liaison, Governmental Liaison Operations.

Material Changes

(1) Revised the tile of IRM 11.4.1.1 to Program Scope and Objectives to properly reflect the information communicated in this subsection. Included important information to conform to the new internal and management control standards under the following titles:

  1. IRM 11.4.1.1.1, Background - Added background information on Governmental Liaison Operations. Information from prior section 11.4.1.1 was incorporated into this new subsection.

  2. IRM 11.4.1.2, Authority - Added legal authorities governing Governmental Liaison Operations.

  3. IRM 11.4.1.3, Roles and Responsibilities - This IRM applies to all Governmental Liaisons.

(2) Removed all references to the Congressional Affairs Program (CAP). CAP is now with Legislative Affairs. See IRM 11.5

(3) Removed Tax Gap Definition.

(4) Added exhibit listing acronyms used in this IRM and their definitions.

Effect on Other Documents

This material supersedes 11.4.1, Office of Governmental Liaison - Governmental Liaison Operations, dated January 06, 2017.

Audience

This IRM is intended for employees of the Associate Director, Governmental Liaison.

Effective Date

(12-05-2017)

Related Resources

The Disclosure and Privacy Knowledge Base is available at the following web address: https://portal.ds.irsnet.gov/sites/vl003/pages/default.aspx.

Phyllis T. Grimes

Director, Governmental Liaison, Disclosure and Safeguards

Program Scope and Objectives

  1. Purpose: This IRM section provides instructions concerning the Governmental Liaison (GL) program that facilitates the exchange of data and fosters partnerships with federal, state, and local governmental agencies to improve tax administration, in accordance with Policy Statement 11-98, FedState Relations. See IRM 1.2.19.1.13, Policy Statement 11-98 (Formerly P-6-14).

  2. Audience: These procedures apply to all Governmental Liaison, Disclosure and Safeguards (GLDS) employees.

  3. Policy Owner: The GL Office, under GLDS, is responsible for oversight of the GL policy..

  4. Program Owner: The GLDS office, under Privacy, Governmental Liaison and Disclosure (PGLD) is the program office responsible for oversight of the Servicewide Governmental Liaison policy.

Background

  1. The Governmental Liaison (GL) program facilitates the exchange of data and fosters partnerships with federal, state, and local governmental agencies to improve tax administration., in accordance with Policy Statement 11-98, FedState Relations. See IRM 1.2.19.1.13, Policy Statement 11-98 (Formerly P-6-14).

  2. Governmental Liaison began as a limited information exchange program in the 1920s and is now a major IRS liaison program to foster and maintain joint tax administration projects to achieve tax compliance and Service objectives via partnerships with federal, state and local governmental agencies.

  3. In 1991, the Office of FedState Relations was created in the IRS National Office. From 1994 through 1996, FedState was institutionalized in the field with the creation of FedState regional, district office and service center program managers.

  4. In July 2000, the program was expanded to include new Governmental Liaison (GL) positions, assigned responsibility for relationships with the 50 states, the District of Columbia (D.C.) and the U.S. Territories. Field GLs reported to Governmental Liaison and Disclosure (GLD) Area Managers and a centralized structure headquartered in Washington, D.C.

  5. In October 2005, GL became a part of GLD in the Communications, Liaison and Disclosure operating unit of the Small Business/Self-Employed (SB/SE) Division.

  6. In June 2011, GLD became a part of Privacy, Governmental Liaison and Disclosure (PGLD), a new organization under the Deputy Commissioner, Operations and Support. As part of this realignment, the management structure of GL changed, establishing the Associate Director, Governmental Liaison position, a GL Headquarters/Policy (HQ/Policy) manager position, as well as field GL East and West manager positions, retitled as Chief, GL HQ/Policy and Chief, GL East and West, respectively. The headquarters and field management staff report directly to the Associate Director, GL.

  7. Effective December 9, 2013, GLD was combined with the Office of Safeguards to form Governmental, Liaison, Disclosure and Safeguards (GLDS), reporting to the Director, GLDS.

Authority

  1. The following items govern the authority pertaining to Governmental Liaison operations:

    • IRM 1.2.19.1.13, Policy Statement 11-98 (Formerly P-6-14)

    • IRM 11.3.32.5, Basic Agreements

    • IRM 11.3.32.6, Implementing Agreements

    • IRM 11.3.32.8, Memorandums of Understanding

Roles and Responsibilities

  1. The Office of Governmental Liaison develops and implements cooperative partnerships between the IRS and state tax agencies, as well as other federal and local governmental agencies.

Acronyms

  1. See Exhibit 11.4.1-3 for a list of acronyms used in this IRM and their definitions.

Function of the Associate Director, Governmental Liaison

  1. The Associate Director, GL supports IRS compliance, enforcement, and service to taxpayers by partnering with federal, state, and local governmental agencies to improve tax administration at all levels of government.

  2. The Associate Director, GL carries out his/her goals by:

    1. Working jointly with the business units in formulating compliance, enforcement, and customer service initiatives.

    2. Partnering with federal, state, and local governmental agencies to exchange tax and other information and engage in other joint activities.

Governmental Liaison Roles and Responsibilities

  1. The mission of the Associate Director, GL is to establish roles and responsibilities and direct overall operations for GL HQ/Policy and field GL staff.

Governmental Liaison Headquarters Policy

  1. Assists the business units in formulating, developing, testing, and implementing new initiatives.

  2. Provides national oversight and coordination of new initiatives, including the development of Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs), if applicable.

  3. Serves as the point of contact for field and headquarters business unit staff.

  4. Develops policy and provides oversight for the IRS GL program and facilitates the identification and resolution of legal and disclosure issues impacting initiatives.

  5. Serves as liaison between IRS headquarters and federal, state and local governmental agencies (for non-Tax Exempt and Government Entities (TE/GE)-related activities).

  6. Measures overall program effectiveness.

  7. Serves as primary liaison with the Federation of Tax Administrators (FTA) and for the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC).

  8. Supports IRS training classes and materials that are offered for state and local governmental agency personnel.

  9. Coordinates with Safeguards and assists Safeguards, as necessary, in soliciting overdue Safeguard Security Reports (SSRs), resolving serious deficiency findings and corrective actions and delivering key messages to external agency partners.

  10. Updates Disclosures to State Agencies Spreadsheets folder on SharePoint.

  11. Refers to and/or consults with Disclosure and Data Services, as appropriate, on requests for Federal tax information (FTI) from other governmental agencies or for other IRS information not available to the public.

  12. .The GL will update and maintain agreements on the IRS Agreement Database (IAD).

  13. Inputs all actions taken into GL inventory management system.

Customer Service Strategy
  1. The GL HQ/Policy Customer Service Strategy (CSS) ensures effective communications with internal and external stakeholders, accomplished by the following:

    1. Sharing information and facilitating the implementation of programs involving field GL staff, other PGLD components and other business units.

    2. Collaborating with GLDS components to identify activities and develop strategies to consolidate key messages into a unified voice, as appropriate, for diverse audiences.

  2. CSS Objectives:

    1. Support PGLD strategic objectives.

    2. Establish a clear strategic direction with direct links to the resources and activities of PGLD and the IRS business units.

    3. Develop appropriate strategies to identify and resolve emerging issues identified in the field and in the Communications and Stakeholder Outreach Issue Management Resolution System and direct workflow to the appropriate process.

    4. Identify partnering opportunities with other business units.

    5. Encourage suggestions by IRS employees and external stakeholders for increased collaboration between federal, state, and local governmental agencies.

    6. Increase Service-wide awareness of GL activities.

    7. Deliver key messages to internal and external stakeholders so they clearly understand expectations and desired outcomes.

    8. Enhance and increase accessibility to GL products and documents available to internal stakeholders using the IRS Intranet, the GLD web site, GL SharePoint site and the GL Initiatives Inventory, as appropriate.

    9. Maintain a working relationship/coordination between GL, Legislative Affairs (LA) and the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS).

  3. CSS Components:

    1. GL Initiative Development Guide (GLIDe) process. See IRM 11.4.1.13.

    2. The following table is a description of the GL HQ/Policy Communiqué Template:

      The GL communiqué is accessible by GL employees with proper access permissions on the GL SharePoint site. The communiqué is used by GL HQ/Policy analysts to solicit external partner involvement in a project through the field GLs, as well as to share information on national GL and business unit programs.
      The GL Communiqué streamlines communications with the field. It is the vehicle used to provide specific instructions to the field on any requested action or project implementation. The communiqué will include supporting documents, such as, MOUs, templates, fact sheets, talking points.
      A communiqué generally will be created whenever information or actions need to be solicited from or communicated to the field by GL HQ/Policy.
      The communiqué will be updated by GL HQ/Policy, as necessary, to ensure delivery of accurate messages to the field.
    3. GL Initiatives Inventory: The GL (FedState) and Federal Intergovernmental Partnering Program inventories and instructions are located on the GL SharePoint site. These inventories are GL and management tools intended to be a complete source of all GL projects and programs nationwide.

    4. The following table describes the GL SharePoint site:

      GL SharePoint is a centralized repository for agreements, instructions, templates and other necessary reference information for GL staff.
      The GL SharePoint site contains scanned agreements and MOUs and a variety of other useful information and resources.
      There is a "Search" box at the top right of every SharePoint site for searching files by keyword of the file name.
    5. GL Web Page – The GL web page contains current information regarding the IRS GL Program and activities at the following web address: https://portal.ds.irsnet.gov/sites/vl003/lists/governmentalliaison/landingview.aspx.

Tax Gap Initiatives
  1. GL Role The GLs will support service-wide initiatives to obtain data from state and federal governmental partners to enforce voluntary compliance and reduce the tax gap.

Governmental Liaison Chiefs

  1. GL Chiefs (East and West) Responsibilities

    1. Report to the Associate Director, GL.

    2. Manage, direct and oversee the work of the field GLs and of the management assistant.

    3. Deliver GL programs through effective use of staff and resources.

    4. Refer GL program issues that require technical, procedural or policy support to the Chief, GL HQ/Policy for resolution.

    5. Convey key IRS messages to senior state and local officials, either directly or through field staff.

    6. Implement the GL program by:
      1. Administering national policies, guidelines and initiatives.
      2. Partnering and networking with business unit management officials on local and national initiatives.
      3. Partnering and networking with federal, state, and local governmental agency executives responsible for operations in the GL areas.
      4. Providing area resources to support GL teams and sub-teams working on headquarters or area initiatives and projects.
      5. Coordinating input and feedback on national, area, and local initiatives and projects.
      6. Coordination of Tax Administration, (also known as Basic Agreements) (BAs), by the Chief Privacy Officer, within established time frames and for ensuring the transmission of a signed original agreements to the agency heads.
      7. Reviewing new Implementing Agreements (IAs) and MOUs prior to signing by the appropriate IRS official.
      8. Ensuring GLs support, to the extent necessary, of activities connected with safeguarding requirements of agencies receiving federal tax information (FTI) and for elevating to Safeguards any unresolved matters requiring policy, procedural or technical guidance, or assistance

      Note:

      GL HQ/Policy does not provide policy, procedural or technical guidance on safeguard reporting requirements under the jurisdiction of Safeguards.


      9. Approving the participation of GLs in Safeguard Reviews and, in coordination with Safeguards, serving as a key contact with agencies on substantial safeguard issues that require high-level involvement to assist Safeguards in resolving deficiencies or addressing data loss/protection issues.
      10. Providing oversight of training requests from governmental agencies
      11. Representing IRS and conveying key messages to high-level senior governmental officials at meetings, conferences, forums and other venues
      12. Preparing briefings for the Associate Director, GL

  2. Chief, GL Headquarters/Policy Responsibilities

    1. Reports to the Associate Director, GL

    2. Manage, direct, and oversee the work of the headquarters analyst staff.

    3. Deliver GL programs through effective use of staff and resources.

    4. Convey key IRS messages to senior state and local officials, either directly or through field GLs.

    5. Implement the GL program by:
      1. Developing, communicating and clarifying national policies, guidelines and initiatives
      2. Partnering and networking with business unit management officials at the headquarters level
      3. Partnering and networking, as necessary, with officials of other federal agencies and organizations, such as the FTA
      4. Representing GL at internal conferences and meetings
      5. Allocating headquarters resources to establish and manage national teams and sub-teams for headquarters initiatives and projects
      6. Reviewing headquarters level MOUs and other agreements, as necessary, prior to signing by the appropriate IRS official

Governmental Liaisons

  1. GLs are the primary point of contact for managing IRS relationships with the following:

    1. Federal, state, and local governmental agencies in their assigned state(s) and/or Insular Territories for matters not related to tax reporting, information reporting and compliance issues relative to governmental entities in their role as taxpayers or employers. The TE/GE division has jurisdiction over governmental agencies where these issues are concerned.

    2. Insular Territories on IRS policy issues.

  2. GLs implement the GL program in their assigned states. To achieve goals of national, area, and local tax compliance or service projects, they perform key activities including, but not limited to, the following:

    1. GL Agreement-Related Program activities

    2. GL Data Exchange Program (GLDEP) activities

    3. Disclosure Program activities

    4. Safeguards Program activities

    5. GL Miscellaneous Program activities

  3. GL Agreement-Related Program Activities

    1. Assist in developing the BA, IA, or MOU draft, as necessary, according to approved IRM templates and coordinating with other GLDS functions and business units, as appropriate.

    2. Coordinate the signing of the BAs, IAs, MOUs and other agreements by the head of external agencies.

    3. Distribute signed original agreements and copies of such agreements to external agencies and IRS officials, as appropriate.

    4. Ensure scanning and posting of GL agreements on the GL SharePoint site and updating of the GL Initiatives Inventory.

    5. Implement national or area projects and initiatives.

    6. Initiate periodic reviews of IAs and MOUs in collaboration and coordination with the Disclosure Manager (DM), Safeguards, the business unit and the agency.

    7. Consult with GL HQ/Policy and the OD/FD to ensure new initiatives and projects are covered by MOUs or are added as revisions or addenda to IAs, as necessary.

  4. GLDEP Activities

    1. Manage the GLDEP locally, in accordance with IRM 11.4.2, Data Exchange Program.

    2. Advise Data Services (DS) of new agencies entering BAs and other agreements.

    3. Coordinate DS involvement, as necessary.

  5. Disclosure Program Activities

    1. Consult with Disclosure when planning or implementing new GL initiatives, especially those that involve the exchange of FTI, Personally Identifiable Information, or other sensitive but unclassified information.

    2. Refer to Disclosure all written requests for FTI received from other governmental agencies or for other information not specifically known to be available to the public.

    3. Call the Disclosure Help Desk at 1-866-591-0860 for help with disclosure-related questions.

    4. Refer external callers requesting disclosure assistance to the appropriate Disclosure office.

  6. Safeguards Program Activities

    1. Advise Safeguards of agencies entering BAs, IAs or MOUs and facilitate Safeguards involvement, as necessary.

    2. Invite Safeguards to initial meetings with agencies to address the safeguarding procedures and requirements outlined in Publication 1075, Tax Information Security Guidelines for Federal, State, and Local Agencies.

    3. Assist state tax/revenue agencies in meeting IRS safeguard reporting requirements by referring questions concerning proper completion of outstanding Safeguard Security Reports (SSR)s to Safeguards as they arise, soliciting overdue SSRs and Corrective Action Plans, etc.

    4. Arrange and facilitate meetings with federal, state, and local governmental agency personnel at the request of Safeguards to ensure timely and accurate resolution of serious deficiencies noted in Safeguard Review Reports, etc.

    5. Participate in on-site Safeguard Reviews, as requested or approved by Safeguards and the respective GL field Chief.

    6. Manage the relationship with the agency.

    7. Provide assistance to Safeguards to facilitate agency compliance with safeguarding requirements, as necessary, if serious issues are identified during on-site Safeguard Reviews, etc.

    8. Brief the GL Chief about serious safeguarding deficiencies or other unresolved issues.

  7. Miscellaneous Program Activities

    1. Conduct appropriate research to resolve issues and inquiries independently and consult with Disclosure, GL HQ/Policy, Data Services (DS), Safeguards, other PGLD functions and other IRS business units, as necessary.

    2. Assist business units with meetings, outreach efforts and initiatives involving federal, state and local governmental agencies.

    3. Provide information to stakeholders about IRS training available to state and local governmental agency personnel.

    4. Communicate with federal, state and local governmental agencies about IRS business unit strategic objectives and communicate external agency initiatives and objectives to key internal stakeholders.

    5. Represent the IRS at meetings with federal, state and local governmental agencies, as appropriate.

    6. Prepare briefings for the GL Chief and provide input and feedback from stakeholders regarding existing and potential IRS initiatives and projects.

    7. Notify GL HQ/Policy of agency name changes and requests new agency codes, as necessary.

    8. Input actions taken into the GL information management system.

IRS Roles and Responsibilities in Support of Governmental Liaison

  1. GL programs, initiatives, and projects often involve one or more business units to maximize cooperation and leverage resources.

  2. PGLD staff provide technical assistance and/or partner with GL, as follows:

    1. Disclosure staff provide technical assistance on existing and potential agreements involving the disclosure of FTI to accomplish IRS and/or federal, state and local governmental agency objectives.

    2. Data Services staff manage the critical GLDEP, coordinating the routine disclosure of a vast amount of FTI to qualified federal, state, and local governmental agencies.

    3. Safeguards staff work through existing GL relationships to ensure federal, state, and local governmental agencies meet their statutory requirements to protect FTI in their possession.

    4. Other PGLD organizations (Privacy Policy and Compliance (PPC) and Identity and Records Protection (IRP)) provide technical expertise to GL and ongoing support, as needed, at outreach events where IRS information may be shared with federal, state, and local governmental agency stakeholders.

  3. Business unit staff at all levels provide information, commit resources and provide technical expertise necessary to create and implement initiatives and projects involving GL partners to achieve tax compliance, accomplish Service goals, and enhance federal tax administration. Memorandums of Understanding with SB/SE and W&I provide a framework for any assistance GLs need.

Partnering with Federal, State and Local Governmental Agencies

  1. GL generally manages partnering relationships between the IRS and state, local and federal governmental agencies through the GL/FedState Program, the Municipal Agency Partnering Program (MAPP) and the Federal Intergovernmental Program (FIP).

  2. The GL is the primary point of contact for partnering with these agencies for matters not related to tax reporting, information reporting and compliance issues relative to governmental entities in their role as taxpayers or employers. The TE/GE division has jurisdiction over governmental agencies where these issues are concerned. The GL will:

    1. Facilitate and develop relationships, as necessary, with federal, state and local governmental agency liaisons.

    2. Coordinate meetings between IRS and federal, state, and local governmental agency staff.

    3. Facilitate projects and initiatives between federal, state, and local governmental agencies and IRS business units.

    4. Arrange joint training sessions.

    5. Manage the GLDEP locally.

    6. Act as liaison between the IRS and federal, state, and local governmental agencies for other tax administration matters by referring technical inquiries received to the appropriate business unit.

  3. The FIP provides a systematic and structured approach to expanding existing relationships and establishing new relationships with other federal agencies to develop initiatives that support business unit priorities. The program will help ensure IRS has a centralized process to appropriately coordinate new federal initiatives and provide a service-wide inventory of current agreements and projects. FIP partnerships encourage leveraging of IRS resources to identify, gather, and share information and data, particularly where initiatives and relationships have the potential for increased tax compliance and decreased taxpayer burden. To further the mission and objectives of the Service, it is critical that IRS leverages resources with other federal agencies to achieve IRS strategic goals. GL HQ/Policy will act as the liaison between the IRS and federal agency headquarters offices. GL HQ/Policy will facilitate the development of new relationships between business units and other federal agencies, but ownership of new federal initiatives will remain with the respective business unit. Existing IRS/federal agency relationships are not affected by the FIP, other than by the inclusion of ongoing initiatives in the FIP inventory. Field GLs are the primary points of contact with local branch or field offices of other federal agencies.

  4. As stated, the GL will work closely with the DM in activities where FTI is provided to state revenue and workforce agencies. The DM will coordinate, review and approve documents with respect to the following:

    1. BAs, IAs, and MOUs facilitated by the GL

    2. GLDEP enrollment agreements

    3. Tax data element selection forms

    4. Exchanges of FTI

    5. Need and use determinations and justifications by state revenue and workforce agencies for access to FTI under IRC 6103(d)

    6. Disclosure Authorization list(s)

Partnering Examples for Improving Tax Administration

  1. There are numerous opportunities for the Service to partner with federal, state, and local governmental agencies to improve federal and state tax administration. Following are four examples that involve the sharing of federal or state tax information.

    1. Modernized e-File (MeF) Program - Most states have agreements with the IRS for joint electronic filing of tax returns. Federal and state returns are transmitted by an electronic return originator to an IRS campus. Under the MeF program, the IRS separates the returns and sends the state return to the state tax agency for processing.

    2. State Income Tax Levy Program (SITLP) and Treasury Offset Program (TOP) - Under SITLP the IRS levies on state tax refunds when the taxpayer owes federal income tax. Under TOP, a state certifies tax debts through the Bureau of Fiscal Services, federal tax refunds are levied upon, and the proceeds are sent to, the participating state agency.

    3. State Reverse File Match Initiative (SRFMI) - Under SRFMI, states match the IRS Individual and Business Master File extracts received through the GLDEP and supply up to four extracts annually back to the IRS on individual income tax, corporate income tax, sales tax, and withholding data.

    4. The Questionable Employment Tax Practices (QETP) - The QETP MOU allows the IRS and State Workforce Agencies to share audit results and conduct side-by-side employment tax audits.

Stakeholder Relationship Management Overview

  1. Communications and Stakeholder Outreach (CSO) manages SB/SE’s Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM) for practitioner and business stakeholders and maintains the CSO SRM web site with information on projects and outreach activities affecting practitioners and small business stakeholders. See Exhibit 11.4.1-1 for a chart that identifies GL and CSO stakeholder relationships and possible opportunities to support each other with respect to GL's external agency stakeholders.

  2. Many area offices have an SRM Local Council (SRMLC) to deliver the program in the field. The purpose of the SRMLC is to work issues involving more than two IRS functions and external stakeholders. The GL may participate in an SRMLC composed of members from the business units. Cross-functional council meetings provide an opportunity to pool the efforts and resources of the members and their respective stakeholders.

    1. Council meetings are a communication forum for marketing GL and other PGLD programs/roles and to improve the GL’s awareness of other functional activities, priorities, and projects. Meetings provide an opportunity to solicit and provide input for projects.

    2. Council meetings are an opportunity to encourage business units to partner with states or other agencies and vice versa. GL support for business unit projects promotes relationship building. Leveraging resources is a major benefit of mutual support.

Federal, State and Local Governmental Agency Relationship Management

  1. GL and Disclosure (sometimes in conjunction with the TE/GE Division's Federal, State, and Local Governments (FSLG) unit staff) will facilitate periodic meetings between the IRS and federal, state and local governmental agencies. Topics may include the status of ongoing initiatives, new initiatives, the safeguards program, training and others.

  2. GL will facilitate ad hoc meetings between the IRS and federal, state, and local governmental agencies on Service-wide issues or on functional issues.

  3. GL has a general understanding of the state and local tax structure in their assigned state(s) and can provide information about state and local taxes to the business units. Governmental Liaison will share information about new IRS policies, procedures and programs with federal, state, and local governmental agency staff.

  4. GL will refer inquiries that involve external agency tax filing requirements and other tax and compliance issues related to federal, state and local governmental agencies as employers or taxpayers (versus partnering, outreach, training and other non-tax related issues) to the TE/GE FSLG office, which has jurisdiction over governmental agencies where these issues are concerned.

Stakeholder Relationship Management Local Council

  1. The GL’s role in the SRMLC is to:

    1. Share information about external partners that may impact the business units.

    2. Identify and evaluate business unit projects and initiatives that may affect GL stakeholders.

    3. Identify opportunities for joint initiatives or partnering and suggest projects for SRMLC members to consider.

    4. Support SRMLC projects and obtain the support of GL stakeholders.

    5. Request support from the SRMLC members for GL projects.

    6. Market the GL program on an ongoing basis to other SRMLC members.

    7. Enhance relationships critical to the success of GL objectives.

  2. GLs will identify projects, initiatives, and concerns discussed in the SRMLC in which GL stakeholders may have an interest or be able to provide support. GLs will invite GL stakeholder participation, when possible, to improve the implementation of any SRMLC or business unit project or initiative.

  3. GLs will use information gained from SRMLC meetings in outreach activities directed to federal, state, and local governmental agencies.

  4. The SRMLC may prove valuable in coordinating cross-functional activities.

Disclosure of Tax Information to State Tax and Other Agencies

  1. The IRS is authorized by statute, IRC 6103(d), to disclose FTI to states (as defined by IRC 6103(b)(5), for tax administration purposes, upon written request. Complete guidelines for making disclosures of FTI to states for tax administration purposes are located in IRM 11.3.32, Disclosure to States for Tax Administration Purposes.

  2. In each of the states with an income tax, there are at least two state tax agencies to which the IRS may disclose FTI. Generally, one or more tax agencies in each state administer such taxes as individual income, corporate, franchise, sales, excise, and property tax. A separate tax agency in each state normally administers the unemployment tax.

  3. Each state tax agency and the IRS may enter into GL exchange agreements that provide for the mutual exchange of FTI and state tax information, as described below:

    1. The Agreement on Coordination of Tax Administration is commonly referred to as the "Basic Agreement (BA)" . Basic Agreements will be signed by the Chief Privacy Officer and by the head of the state tax agency. The provisions of the BA encompass required procedures and safeguards for exchanging tax information. See IRM 11.3.32.5, Basic Agreements, for more specifics regarding BAs. See IRM Exhibit 11.3.32–1, Agreement on Coordination of Tax Administration, for the standard language for BAs.

    2. Implementing Agreements are developed by the GL, in coordination with the DM, in accordance with the provisions of the BA. The IA supplements the BA by providing for continuous or routine exchanges of information, such as examination reports. New IAs will be signed by the head of the state tax agency and by the Director, GLDS. Implementing Agreement exhibits will be updated when there are changes to responsible parties, exchanges added or removed, tolerance changes, and so on. Implementing Agreements will also be amended as the need arises.

    3. Memorandums of Understanding may be used for new projects/initiatives of limited duration that may warrant a pilot/test before a decision is made on full implementation. MOUs may also be preferable where the initiative involves voluminous procedures or provides for disclosures or activities under an authority other than IRC 6103(d). The GL MOU Template, available on the GL SharePoint site, will be used for any MOUs being developed. See IRM 11.4.1.13.2 for more specifics on the GL MOU Template. Examples of programs warranting separate MOUs include the Transcript Delivery System (TDS), which allows approved state users to request and receive certain IRS transcript products directly on-line, as well as the Modernized Internet Employer Identification Number/One Stop application, which allows any state or local agency to participate, but does not provide for the disclosure of FTI.

    4. GL HQ/Policy analysts will assist in determining the proper IRS official(s) to sign/execute MOUs or other agreements based on available guidance.

    5. For additional information about IAs, see IRM 11.3.32.6, Implementing Agreements. See the most current IA template version on the GL SharePoint site under GL Toolbox Resources.

  4. Prior to the receipt of FTI under any new agreement or MOU or of FTI not previously received by the agency, the agency must meet IRS safeguarding requirements, including the submission or updating of a Safeguard Security Report (SSR). The GL will forward a completed SSR Notice to the agency, to remind the agency of SSR requirements when the agency wishes to participate in new MOUs and agreements involving the disclosure of FTI to agencies, as well as for the annual GLDEP enrollment.

    1. If the approved MOU or agreement (including the GLDEP) involves the disclosure of FTI, the agency must meet IRS safeguard requirements prior to receiving FTI under the MOU.

    2. The GL will transmit the SSR Notice to the agency along with the MOU and with the annual GLDEP enrollment solicitation.

    3. The GL will post the completed SSR Notice to the GL SharePoint site, along with the MOU/agreement and will forward the SSR Notice for GLDEP enrollments to Data Services for retention, along with the approved enrollment forms. If initial MOU meetings are held, the SSR Notice will be discussed with the agency.

    4. Refer to IRM 11.3.36, Safeguard Review Program, for more information about safeguarding requirements for agencies receiving FTI.

Processing Requests for Tax Information

  1. FTI may be requested on a case-by-case basis using Form 8796-A, Request for Return/Information, Federal/State Tax Exchange Program- State and Local Government Use Only. Form 8796-A (or a letter containing the required information from Form 8796-A) is used by state tax agencies to request FTI. Form 8796, Request for Return/Information, Federal/State Tax Exchange Program, may be used by the IRS to request information from state tax/revenue agencies.

  2. Form 8796/8796-A must be signed by an officer or employee of the requesting agency who is authorized to request and receive tax information for the agency. Refer to IRM 11.3.32.10, Authorized Disclosures.

  3. GL staff who receive written requests for FTI from states via Form 8796-A or other documents will refer them to Disclosure Centralized Processing Unit for processing or assistance, unless the DM agrees, in advance, to process the request locally.

  4. GLs may assist DMs in updating the list of state personnel authorized to make written requests for FTI or the list of IRS personnel authorized to make requests to states.

Safeguard Review Program

  1. Safeguards ensures federal, state, and local governmental agencies properly protect FTI in their possession to IRS standards. Safeguards staff conduct oversight reviews of agencies to verify that safeguard requirements are met.

  2. Safeguards determines the frequency of Safeguard and Need and Use Reviews, which are usually conducted every three years, but may be more or less frequent if circumstances warrant it. Safeguards conducts Safeguard Reviews of the procedures and practices of agencies that receive FTI to determine compliance with the safeguard requirements of IRC 6103(p)(4). Safeguards also verifies agencies’ actual Need and Use of the FTI by state tax agencies.

  3. See IRM 11.3.36, Safeguard Review Program and Publication 1075, Tax Information Security Guidelines for Federal, State, and Local Agencies, for more information about the Safeguard Review Program.

Coordination of Projects and Joint Initiatives

  1. One of GL’s key responsibilities is to explore opportunities to partner with other governmental entities to improve tax administration and reduce burdens on taxpayers. Many opportunities are found through joint initiatives with external agencies. Opportunities also exist to partner with federal and local agencies.

  2. Governmental Liaison will assist in facilitating state, local, and federal agency support for initiatives owned by IRS business units.

  3. GLs may identify and facilitate joint initiatives involving IRS business units and other partners. However, the day-to-day management of such initiatives is the responsibility of the business unit.

Partnership Activities and Examples

  1. GLs will adhere to Section 5.3 of the BA with their state agencies, which states, "In addition to the exchange of tax and other information, the Agency and IRS will, to the extent feasible, extend to each other assistance in other tax administration matters. This may include such activities as taxpayer assistance, training of personnel, special statistical studies and compilations of data, development and improvement of tax administration systems and procedures, and such other activities as may improve administration."

  2. Examples of partnership activities authorized by the BA include:

    1. Taxpayer Assistance
      1. Joint Walk-in assistance. The IRS may offer space in a Taxpayer Assistance Center to state staff, especially during filing season, for state return preparation and assistance. IRS staff may also work at a state facility.
      2. IRS and state staff can work together at commercial sites, such as stores, to prepare returns during filing season.
      3. In some states, IRS offices and state tax agency offices are co-located. They share adjoining space, either in a commercial building or in a federal or state office where the tenant agency pays rent.
      4. In many states, the IRS and the state tax agency jointly train Voluntary Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly volunteers. This training allows the volunteers to prepare both federal and state returns at volunteer sites.

    2. Stocking Tax Forms
      1. Taxpayer Assistance Centers. In many states, the IRS and the state tax agency provide each other commonly used forms for distribution at local offices.
      2. Kiosks. In some states, the IRS and the state provide tax information at kiosks or in commercial locations at governmental offices. Services available at kiosks include printing current and prior year state and federal forms and providing answers to frequently asked questions.

    3. Training Personnel
      1. GL HQ/Policy will coordinate with IRS training staff and state tax agencies to enroll state employees in IRS training classes, such as Revenue Agent Basic Training. State employee enrollment is limited to those classes where there is space available. There is generally no cost to the state for its employee's attendance in a locally held class.
      2. GL created a training database with electronic file copies of the training classes requested most frequently by state tax agencies. These class files may be shared with state tax agencies. The agencies may print copies to train their employees. The following classes/materials are currently available:
      •LLC (Limited Liability Corporations)
      • Criminal Fraud for Revenue Officers
      • Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention & Consumer Protection Act of 2005
      • Flow Through Entities
      TCO
      • Revenue Agent Basic Corporations
      • Revenue Agent 1040
      • Basic Employment Tax
      • FUTA (Federal Unemployment Tax Act)
      • Estate and Gift Fiduciary Training
      • LB&I Units for Partnerships, Consolidations, Liquidations, and Real Estate and Basic Valuation
      • Audit Guide for Suspected POS-Zapper Cases
      • Frontline Leadership Readiness Program
      3. Each GL area has representatives who access the training materials database to assist with filling requests from the states.
      4. Continuing Professional Education (CPE). Business units may invite state tax agency staff to attend their CPEs, especially if there are topics relevant to state tax administration. The GL will coordinate the state’s attendance at IRS CPEs. When the state has training that is of interest to IRS employees, the state may invite the IRS to participate.

Identifying Joint Initiatives

  1. Potential joint initiatives can be identified in a number of ways: as a result of a request from an OD/FD, on one's own initiative, brainstorming with internal and external stakeholders, or replicating an approved existing initiative.

  2. To identify joint initiative opportunities, GL must know the program goals and strategic plans and/or priorities of internal and external stakeholders. GL should have a working knowledge of IRS goals and strategic plans along with the more specific goals and objectives of the business units. In addition, GL should be familiar with the goals and strategic plans of state and local tax and non-tax agencies, federal agencies, and other potential partners.

  3. Regular meetings and networking with internal and external stakeholders are essential. Joint meetings are a good opportunity to brainstorm new initiatives, but they should be in clear support of an IRS business priority.

  4. GLs must become familiar with joint initiatives taking place in other states and areas. Successfully implemented initiatives in one state or area may be replicated in others. A nationwide listing of GL initiatives is available on the GL SharePoint site.

Implementing Joint Initiatives

  1. The role of the GL is to identify, initiate and facilitate partnering opportunities with external agencies. Implementation and day-to-day management of an initiative is the responsibility of the IRS business unit program owner. Examples of joint initiatives initiated and/or facilitated by GL but owned and managed by a business unit include:

    1. Questionable Employment Tax Practices (QETP) MOU

    2. Lien Centralization Initiative

    3. Practitioner seminars taught by IRS and state tax agency employees

    4. Modernized e-File

  2. In the role of facilitator of a business unit managed initiative, GL will ensure the initiative is worked jointly with IRS partners. Among other things, GL will:

    1. Identify contacts at the state or other governmental entity.

    2. Identify and include all relevant stakeholders (such as, Disclosure, Safeguards, Chief Counsel).

    3. Arrange and, where appropriate, attend or conduct meetings between the business unit and other governmental agencies.

    4. Monitor action plans and activities.

    5. Bring together the parties responsible for drafting any required MOUs, including, Disclosure, the Chief Counsel GL Coordinator, other GL staff, the appropriate business unit and the external stakeholder(s) involved. GL will provide input and assistance to the process of drafting the MOU, as necessary.

    6. Recommend an initiative for replication nationwide, when warranted.

GL Initiative Development Guide (GLIDe)

  1. Initiatives worked jointly by IRS and other governmental entities will be developed and documented using the GLIDe. The GLIDe is a tool used to establish a business case for proposed joint initiatives with federal, state and local agencies to ensure joint initiatives support IRS business objectives and/or key stakeholder objectives and that key issues are considered in developing proposed initiatives. In partnership with the business units, GL staff will use the GLIDe to facilitate the development of initiatives with external agencies. The GLIDe will document what type of agreement, MOU, written request, ad hoc referral, etc., will be used to initiate and continue the exchange or activity. The GLIDe may also be used to document necessary information about other GL activities that support internal and external customers.

  2. GL will prepare a GLIDe when proposing local or national initiatives to a business unit or the expansion of successful initiatives. GL will also prepare a GLIDe if business unit HQ functions request GL assistance to facilitate national projects or initiatives in support of their program priorities and requirements.

  3. The GLIDe will serve as the historical record and business case of an initiative’s development.

  4. In partnership with the business units, GL will use the GLIDe to facilitate the development of initiatives, documenting key information and requiring GLDS and business unit approval involving:

    1. New data exchanges/initiatives

    2. New uses of data currently exchanged

    3. Joint compliance activities

    4. New data matching initiatives

    5. Compliance Initiative Projects (CIPs) or Privacy Impact Statements (See IRM 4.17, Compliance Initiative Projects, for CIP procedures and IRM 11.3.14.12, Controlling Information From Third Parties, for Privacy Impact Statement requirements)

  5. The GLIDe will be used for all new initiatives with other governmental entities unless one of the following exceptions apply:

    1. Routine activities requiring only local approval, such as joint forms availability at mutual sites, joint filing season publicity, joint committees, conferences, workshops, training, and similar activities

    2. Replicating a previously approved initiative without substantial changes

    3. Exchanges of or access to information already covered by Implementing Agreement or MOU provisions

  6. Preparation of the GLIDe does not preclude addressing business unit requirements for completing the appropriate CIP or other business unit required documentation.

  7. Prior to facilitating the development of a local initiative, the GL will research and consult with the appropriate GL HQ/Policy analyst, when necessary, to determine if a similar initiative was pursued previously with the business unit. If an identical or similar initiative was previously pursued, the GL will obtain a copy of the GLIDe or other documentation developed for the initiative, if available, to determine the status and outcome of the earlier initiative.

Completing the GLIDe

  1. The following information will be addressed in the GLIDe, which is available in template form on the GL SharePoint site:

    1. Initiative or project title.

    2. IRS business owner or requester. Generally the business unit requesting or providing information and/or resources.

    3. GL HQ/Policy Analyst or field GL contact.

    4. Background and objectives of the initiative. Explain why the initiative was selected for development, situations to be addressed, improvements to be made, etc.

    5. Strategic Plan/Priority Supported. Include for the business unit and for GLDS.

    6. External Agency Partner(s). Identify the specific federal, state or local agency or the type of agency, as appropriate.

    7. Description of the process and data needs. Explain how the initiative will work, including the impact on internal and external customers.

    8. Measures to be used to evaluate the success of the initiative. Obtain from the business unit the specific quantitative criteria, or data that will be used to measure the success of the initiative, e.g., number of returns filed, dollars assessed, etc.

    9. Resource/funding requirements. Identify the types of costs and amounts, if known, to develop and implement the initiative, both for GLDS and the business unit.

    10. Coordination with other documents/requirements. Advise the business unit contact that CIP, Civil Liberties Impact Assessment, and Privacy Impact Statement requirements need to be considered. Also determine, in coordination with the function, (Disclosure, etc.), whether the initiative will be implemented or information will be obtained using a written request, Implementing Agreement change, MOU or other agreement or documentation.

    11. Legal issues, disclosure authority, information technology issues, and other privacy or security considerations. At a minimum, request Disclosure involvement, up-front, as well as Counsel, Safeguards, Information Technology (IT) and Privacy Compliance.

    12. Benefits versus challenges, if any. Explain the tangible and intangible benefits to the IRS and to the external agency partner involved, e.g., dollars saved, burden reduction, increased revenue, streamlined processes, etc.

    13. Testing or piloting recommendations, if any.

  2. GL staff will request input from the appropriate business unit and/or external partner when developing or attempting to market a new initiative.

  3. If a business unit expresses interest in initiating an activity involving an external agency, GL will ask the function to provide information needed to complete the GLIDe. If an external partner requests GL assistance to initiate an activity, GL will complete the GLIDe with information from the external agency.

  4. After completing the GLIDe, GL will obtain the approval signature on the GLIDe of the Director, GLDS and of the appropriate business unit first-level executive or above.

  5. If the business unit official will not sign the GLIDe, GL will consult with the GL Chief to determine the extent of further GL involvement with the development and implementation of the initiative. The appropriate GL Chief or the Associate Director, GL may contact local or headquarters business unit management officials to determine the need for continuing GL assistance.

GL MOU Template

  1. The GL MOU Template, Exhibit 11.4.1-2, is available on the GL SharePoint site and will normally be used for any MOUs initiated by the Service. The template contains standardized language for disclosure, safeguards, record keeping requirements, transmittal procedures, privacy, evaluation of data exchange and evaluation of agreement, which must be included or considered for each MOU.

  2. An MOU is not required for all initiatives. However, any FTI provided to a state tax agency must be specifically addressed in the applicable IA, and must be covered in an MOU or other agreement or by an ad hoc (specific) written request for the information. GL will coordinate with Disclosure and the business owner to determine whether an MOU or another option will be used to establish and implement an initiative.

  3. An MOU may be appropriate for short-term or long-term projects, for initiatives with an indefinite life, for disclosures of FTI to a state or local tax agency under a provision of the tax code other than IRC 6103(d), or for activities not involving a disclosure of FTI or other protected information. An MOU may supplement an IA when the instructions and procedures of the activity are such that they would unduly lengthen or complicate the IA. An MOU may also be used as interim documentation of the authority and provisions of the activity when an initiative is being piloted or while the IA is being amended or renegotiated to include an ongoing activity or exchange of FTI.

  4. An MOU will be signed/executed by the head of the state tax agency or other appropriate representative of a non-tax agency authorized to legally bind the agency involved. The authority to sign MOUs and other agreements by IRS officials will be based on Service-wide and/or business unit delegated authority. GL HQ/Policy analysts will assist, as necessary, in determining the proper IRS officials to sign MOUs and agreements on behalf of the IRS. See IRM 11.4.1.14.3, Officials Authorized to Sign IAs, MOUs and Similar Agreements with Other Federal, State and Local Agencies.

  5. When a business unit headquarters initiates an MOU, the GL HQ/Policy analyst will coordinate with business unit headquarters staff, Disclosure, and the Chief Counsel GL Coordinator to ensure all items in the GL MOU template are properly addressed.

  6. GL staff will refer recommended MOU or exhibits language changes to the appropriate GL/HQ Policy Analyst for coordination with Disclosure, Counsel, the business unit, etc.

Procedures for Routing, Approving, Signing and Terminating Agreements

  1. The Basic Agreement (BA) will be drafted in accordance with the procedures in Disclosure IRM 11.3.32.5, Disclosure to States for Tax Administration Purposes, Basic Agreements. After the agreement is drafted, it will undergo a pre-approval review to ensure all aspects of the agreement are perfected prior to presenting the document for the official signatures of the appropriate IRS and state officials.

  2. Historically, the IRS Commissioner signed BAs, but Delegation Order 1-23 (formerly D.O. 193), which is found in IRM 1.2.40.21, authorizes assistant deputy commissioners Chief Counsel opined in GLS-112255/GLS-HQ-386-11, Authority to Execute an IRC 6103(d) Basic Agreement Fed/State Agreement (dated June 8, 2011), that in accordance with , the SB/SE Commissioner had functional authority over the FedState program and responsibility for protecting confidential information by external parties. Further, D.O. 1-23 authorizes division commissioners to perform work the IRS Commissioner is authorized to perform if it relates to, arises out of, or concerns activities administered by their offices. 1).

  3. The FedState, or Governmental Liaison program, is now under the jurisdiction of the Chief Privacy Officer. Therefore, the Chief Privacy Officer has functional authority to execute BAs on behalf of the IRS.

Pre-Approval Process for Basic Agreements (BAs)

  1. The pre-approval process for BAs ensures all procedural, technical, legal and other issues are resolved prior to formal routing to obtain the signatures of IRS and state tax agency officials. There is no specific period for the completion of the pre-approval process. However, GLs will ensure actions are taken as expeditiously as possible to minimize delays.

  2. The GL will prepare the pre-approval package to include the following documents required for all new BAs, at a minimum:

    1. Draft BA

    2. Copies of applicable state statutes, an agency organization chart, and other relevant documentation collected in developing the draft BA

    3. Form 13839-A, Note to Reviewer (For a Signature Package), that will:
      i. Provide the justification for entering into the agreement with the state tax agency.
      ii. Include the approved “Need and Use” statement/justification
      iii. Address, where warranted, IRC 6103(p(8) considerations outlined in Disclosure IRM 11.3.32.14.1, State Law Requirements.
      iv. Document coordination with Disclosure, Safeguards and Chief Counsel.

    4. A statement indicating GL issued an SSR Notice to the agency to ensure the agency was aware of requirements for safeguarding FTI.

  3. To initiate the pre-approval process, the GL will prepare Form 14074, Action Routing Sheet, and route the BA Pre-Review package to the following:

    1. DM with jurisdiction over the state tax agency

    2. Local Counsel (in accordance with CCDM 37.1.3, The Counsel Governmental Liaison Coordination Program)

    3. Deputy Associate Director Disclosure (East/West)

    4. GL Chief (East/West)

    5. HQ Disclosure BA Coordinator

  4. Routing, reviews and changes made to the pre-approval package will be completed electronically, to the extent possible.

  5. Once the pre-approval process is completed, the HQ Disclosure BA Coordinator will return the pre-approved package to the GL to initiate formal routing, approval and signing of the BA.

Formal Routing, Approval, and Signing of Basic Agreements

  1. Upon receipt of the pre-approved BA package from HQ Disclosure, the GL will obtain the signature of the head of the state tax agency on two copies of the BA. The head of the state tax agency is generally the official (other than the governor or mayor) responsible under state law for the functions of the particular tax agency or department.

  2. After obtaining the signature of the head of the state tax agency on both copies of the BA, the GL will prepare the formal routing and approval package for the signature on the BA of the Chief Privacy Officer.

  3. The BA signed by the head of the state tax agency will be routed expeditiously by the GL to ensure it will be submitted within 30 days of receipt for the signature of the Chief Privacy Officer. GLDS routing procedures will be followed to secure the signature of the Chief Privacy Officer.

  4. Following the signature of the Chief Privacy Officer, the signed BAs will be returned to the GL. The GL will forward one signed original to the agency.

  5. The GL will scan and send a copy of the second signed BA to the GL SharePoint site Coordinator for posting to the SharePoint agreements folder for the state and will update the GL Initiatives Inventory.

  6. The BA will be effective upon execution of the signature of both parties and will continue in effect indefinitely, unless terminated, in writing, by either party. A change of incumbent in the office of either party to the agreement will have no effect on the agreement.

  7. From time to time, it may be necessary to amend specific sections of a BA by means of an addendum. Any addendum to a BA will be processed in the same manner as the original agreement was processed.

Officials Authorized to Sign IAs, MOUs and Similar Agreements with Other Federal, State and Local Agencies

  1. As discussed in IRM 11.3.32.6, Implementing Agreements, and IRM 11.3.32.8, Memorandums of Understanding, IAs and MOUs may be developed to supplement Basic Agreements by providing detailed procedures and working arrangements for items to be exchanged on a continuing basis and for recurring activities, whether or not they involve disclosures of FTI.

  2. Generally, IAs, MOUs, and similar agreements will be signed by the head of the partner agency or someone that has delegated authority to legally bind the agency.

  3. Counsel opined that the Director, GLDS will sign all new and amended IAs. A signature at a lower level will require an official written delegation of authority. GLDS routing procedures will be followed to obtain the GLDS director's signature.

  4. The authority to sign MOUs and other agreements on behalf of the IRS will be based on service-wide Delegation Order (D.O.) No.1-23, formerly D.O. 193; by OD/FD functional statements, or by other official OD/FD delegations of authority.

    1. D.O. 1-23 limits the authority to sign MOUs and agreements to the respective Division Commissioner(s) or Chief(s) for matters under their jurisdiction, unless the authority is further delegated through a functional statement or other source of authority.

    2. All MOUs and similar agreements that involve the expenditure of IT resources, in addition to the resources of one or more ODs/FDs, will be signed by both the Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement and the Deputy Commissioner for Operations and Support.

    3. All MOUs and similar agreements that involve the use of resources of three or more IRS ODs/FDs, including Criminal Investigation, but excluding IT, will be signed by the Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement.

Procedures for Terminating Agreements with Other Governmental Agencies

  1. When GL staff is informed by an agency or by IRS offices, such as Disclosure, Safeguards and Data Services, that an agency no longer wishes to receive FTI under existing agreements or is not receiving FTI under existing agreements, GL will:

    1. Confirm the statement (if received from a party other than the agency liaison).

    2. Review the termination clause of each agreement to be terminated to ensure the proper procedure will be followed.

    3. Advise the agency to notify the IRS, in writing, of the requested termination in accordance with the agreement. The letter should:
      i. Be addressed to the GL or GL HQ/Policy Analyst, in the case of other federal agency agreements
      ii. Include a list of the agreements the agency wishes to terminate, including the BA, the IA, MOUs, Letters of Understanding, and any other agreements that may be in place
      iii. Address only the specific agreement that the agency wants to terminate if the agency only wishes to discontinue participation in a specific program

    4. Advise a state tax agency that termination of the BA is not required to terminate other agreements. However, if the agency requests termination of the BA, the notification letter should specifically include the BA.

    5. Advise the agency that, if the BA is terminated, it may take some time to obtain a new agreement if the agency later decides to receive FTI.

  2. GL will inform the agency that the termination will not prevent other cooperative activities, such as taxpayer assistance, outreach, training, and other activities that improve tax administration between the IRS and the agency.

  3. If the agency does not send a written notification of request for termination within 30 days of the IRS request, as outlined above, GL will send a letter to the agency (certified return receipt requested) notifying the agency that termination of the agreement will occur in accordance with the agency’s verbal request.

  4. If GL is advised that a function wishes to terminate an agreement, GL will coordinate with the function in communicating with the affected state(s) and drafting a termination letter.

  5. Officials at the same position, or higher, with delegated authority to sign agreements on behalf of the IRS, will sign the termination letter.

  6. GL will advise the following offices upon receiving written notification of termination (or upon issuing a termination letter):

    1. Safeguards via SafeguardReports@irs.gov

    2. Disclosure (field or HQ, as appropriate)

    3. Data Services GLDEP Enrollment Coordinator, if the termination request involves GLDEP extracts

  7. GL will review the IA and all other agreements to determine the functional areas that may be sending information to the state agency and will complete the Terminated Agreements Checklist available on GL SharePoint to identify programs/initiatives to be terminated.

  8. After completing the checklist, GL staff will contact the GL HQ/Policy analyst responsible for terminating information exchanges. The GL HQ/Policy analyst will coordinate with other GL HQ/Policy analysts, as applicable, to advise impacted functional areas of the termination and to discontinue disclosures of additional information under the MOU/agreement.

  9. GL will send the Safeguard Security Report (SSR) Notice Regarding Federal Tax Information (FTI) received by agencies listing the FTI to be terminated to the agency and advise the agency to destroy all FTI on hand using procedures in Publication 1075, Tax Information Guidelines for Federal, State and Local Agencies, and to certify, in writing, that it has destroyed all information on hand. If the agency can/will not destroy the information immediately, the agency will provide the reason and projected date of destruction. The GL will request that the agency provide the certification of destruction in writing.

  10. GL will submit a request to remove terminated agreements from the GL Initiatives Inventory and At-A-Glance spreadsheet.

  11. GL will submit a request to the GL SharePoint administrator to update the document file name in the SharePoint document library to add “terminated” and the date terminated at the end of the agreement's file name.

  12. GL will input all actions taken into Governmental Liaison and Data Services Information System (GLADIS)/Automated Freedom of Information Act (AFOIA) System.

  13. GL will review federal, state and local document files, annually, and will delete agreements required to be terminated, in accordance with records control schedule guidelines.

Coordination of Governmental Liaison Program Legal Issues with Counsel

  1. Governmental Liaison will follow Office of Chief Counsel CCDM 37.1.3, The Counsel Governmental Liaison Coordination Program, procedures.

  2. CCDM 37.1.3 instructs field GLs to contact Associate SB/SE Area Counsel for legal advice on routine matters relating to GL programs. The current list of Associate Area Counsel contacts by state can be found at http://administrative.prod.irscounsel.treas.gov/SBSE_Contacts/Pages/Government%20Liaison.aspx.

  3. To provide appropriate oversight and review of GL initiatives in the developmental stages, GL will ensure Chief Counsel involvement in accordance with guidelines in the GLIDe, discussed in IRM 11.4.1.13. The GLIDe includes a section for documenting identified legal issues and Chief Counsel's legal advice.

  4. GL will refer agreements to Chief Counsel for review and clearance (including MOUs, Letters of Understanding, contracts, and so on) unless the document is a template previously approved by the appropriate Associate Chief Counsel or Division Counsel HQ office.

Effective Use of Intranet/Internet Resources

  1. The vast resources available through the Internet provide a wealth of information that is not only available to the public, but that can be useful in resolving a variety of GL questions and issues.

  2. The IRWeb is essential to the GL as a primary source of information. It efficiently directs employees to content and services available on the IRS Intranet, which they need to perform their duties. Through the IRWeb, GL staff should visit:

    1. The Disclosure and Privacy Knowledge Base, which contains program information and links to key information at: https://portal.ds.irsnet.gov/sites/vl003/pages/default.aspx, and

    2. The GL Intranet site, which contains GL program information, and links to news items and other key information and procedures at: https://portal.ds.irsnet.gov/sites/vl003/lists/governmentalliaison/landingview.aspx

  3. GL SharePoint Main Page, accessible to GL employees only, is a major resource of a variety of important information about GL programs, GL HQ/Policy analyst assignments and GLD communiques, and it provides other links to key information..

Environmental Scanning

  1. Environmental Scanning is the acquisition and use of information about events, trends, and relationships in an organization’s external environment. Environmental scanning includes both reviewing information and researching information. Environmental scanning enables GL staff to stay informed on the program priorities, interests, and needs of external stakeholders.

  2. Environmental scanning is not limited to external stakeholders. GL staff will use available sources, including Intranet sites, regularly to stay abreast of the latest procedures and developments within PGLD and other internal organizations. Excellent internal sources of information and messages to internal and external audiences are available at various sites, including:

    1. Communications website at the following: http://irweb.irs.gov/AboutIRS/bu/cl/npl/SRMCC/Communications/default.aspx

    2. Headline News at the following: http://irweb.irs.gov/AboutIRS/Nwsctr/Headlines/default.aspx

    3. Outreach Initiatives at the following: http://sbse.web.irs.gov/cl2/sl/outreach_initiatives/default.asp

    4. IRS In the News, which is linked from the News Center in the middle of the IRWeb Home Page under News from the Tax Press and General Press at the following: http://irweb.irs.gov/AboutIRS/Nwsctr/ExtIRSNews/ITN/default.aspx

  3. Most governmental agencies and other organizations have websites, such as the following:

    1. Federation of Tax Administrators http://www.taxadmin.org/

    2. Multistate Tax Commission: http://www.mtc.gov/

    3. Official web page of the U.S. Senate: http://www.senate.gov/

    4. Official web page of the U.S. House of Representatives: http://www.house.gov/

  4. The weekly FTA newsletter distributed electronically contains useful information about matters of interest to the states. The FTA list-serve also contains valuable IRS information.

    Note:

    The newsletter may be forwarded to other IRS personnel if there is a business need, but the newsletter may not be sent to stakeholders outside of the IRS.

  5. Electronic newsletters or list-serves for local newspapers, state agencies, and Congressional offices are excellent no-cost alternatives to keeping current with the needs and interests of external customers.

Increasing Governmental Liaison Program Visibility

  1. It is important that the GL program remains visible and shows the value added to the organization, while reinforcing employee roles and responsibilities through regular postings through business unit articles on the IRWeb, at: http://irweb.irs.gov/.

Statistical Data Requests

  1. GLs may receive inquiries about and requests for statistical data from federal, state, or local governmental agencies. GLs will refer to the procedures in Disclosure IRM 11.3.32.21, Special Statistical Studies, Compilations, and Other Services, to advise requesters to make requests to the Statistics of Income (SOI) Division pursuant to IRC 6108(b).

  2. GLs may provide further guidance and assistance to requesters by referring them to SOI tax statistics web page at: https://www.irs.gov/statistics.

  3. GLs may refer to SOI IRM 1.13.1.9.2, Requests for Statistical Services, for additional information about requests for statistical data.

  4. GLs will refer inquiries not resolved above to the appropriate Disclosure Office for assistance.

Resolving Requests for Information and Assistance

  1. GL staff may receive requests for information and assistance from external stakeholders on a variety of topics, including questions about tax law provisions, IRS administrative procedures, IRS policies, legislative matters, IRS testimony and other matters. Such requests will require that GL staff either respond independently or request the assistance of the IRS business units or other organizations, such as Disclosure and Counsel.

  2. Upon receiving information and assistance requests from external agencies, GL staff will conduct initial research using the many research tools available, including, but not limited to, the variety of electronic resources described in IRM 11.4.1.16.

  3. If GL staff is unable to resolve inquiries using the available research tools, such as for technical or complex issues, they may need to request the assistance of the appropriate business unit. GL staff will contact local business unit staff to try to resolve the issue or question.

  4. In the event GLs are unable to resolve information and assistance requests locally, they will request the assistance of GL HQ/Policy analysts, as discussed in IRM 11.4.1.18.1 through IRM 11.4.1.18.4, below.

  5. GLs will direct agencies to submit inquiries related to the Safeguard program and/or requests for assistance related to compliance with IRS safeguard requirements, including safeguard report requirements, to the Safeguards mailbox, at "SafeguardReports@irs.gov" for direct response by Safeguards. GLs will not attempt to answer questions on behalf of Safeguards, unless Safeguards provides GL information with which to respond.

  6. GL may receive requests for technical and legislative assistance, including requests for IRS testimony or written advice on tax matters, from state officials. GL staff will contact Disclosure and/or refer to Disclosure IRM 11.3.35.5, Requests Requiring Headquarters Authorization, for assistance on requests and demands for testimony or for the production of IRS documents.

Wage and Investment (W&I)

  1. GL Responsibilities:

    1. Conduct appropriate research using available resources to respond to the requester, whether formally or informally.

    2. Coordinate, as appropriate, local requests for assistance with local W&I staff.

    3. Elevate issues to the GL Chief if additional support or assistance is needed to resolve issues in coordination with appropriate local management officials or if local relationships with agencies do not.

    4. Forward unresolved requests to the GL/HQ Policy analyst assigned to W&I. The GL will provide his/her research results to the GL/HQ Policy analyst to expedite resolving the request for assistance.

    5. Monitor requests submitted to W&I or to GL HQ/Policy to ensure that a timely response is provided to the state, federal or local governmental agency.

  2. W&I Responsibilities:

    1. Assign a liaison from each function in each local office where a GL is located.

    2. Provide timely technical guidance to enable GL to respond to state, federal and local governmental agency inquiries and will determine local points of contact.

    3. Provide formal written responses, when required.

    4. Resolve local issues with the GL Chief, as necessary

  3. GL HQ/Policy Responsibilities:

    1. Review requests from the W&I HQ office for the assistance of local GLs to ensure that all appropriate information is included to assist GLs in responding to requests.

    2. Review requests for assistance from field GLs and respond, if possible. Request additional information, if needed.

    3. Forward unresolved requests from field GLs to the W&I HQ contact for assistance.

    4. Monitor and follow-up on requests submitted to W&I HQ for response or resolution and communicate responses to field GLs.

    5. If a formal written technical response is needed, coordinate with the function to provide a response to the local GL

Tax Exempt and Government Entities (TE/GE)

  1. GL Responsibilities:

    1. Obtain general information and assistance to respond to state, federal, or local governmental agency inquiries relating to TE/GE forms, applications, publications, exempt organizations, government entities, employer-sponsored pension plans, political organizations, tax exempt municipal bonds, and so on, through the TE/GE Customer Account Service (CAS) toll-free telephone number (1-877-829-5500).

    2. Respond to requesters' inquiries obtained from the CAS.

    3. Forward unresolved requests for assistance to the GL HQ/Policy analyst for coordination with HQ TE/GE. The GL will provide his/her research results to the GL/HQ Policy analyst to expedite resolving the request for assistance.

    4. Monitor and follow-up on requests submitted to TE/GE or to HQ/GL Policy to ensure that a timely response is provided to the state, federal or local governmental agency.

  2. TE/GE Responsibilities:

    1. Provide support through the TE/GE toll-free number to address issues related to the tax exempt community, employee pension plans, Indian tribal governments, tax exempt bonds and the employment taxes of governments as employers.

    2. Document technical, non-account related questions as electronic referrals for call-back by TE/GE CAS revenue agents.

    3. Provide call-back responses on specific form and operational questions related to employee pension plans and exempt organizations.

    4. Provide HQ support and assistance when questions or technical matters cannot be resolved through the CAS.

    5. Administer the Pension Protection Act and the IRC 6104(c) MOU to provide tax information to state attorneys general and departments of revenue, as applicable.

  3. GL HQ/Policy Responsibilities:

    1. Coordinate field GL support for HQ TE/GE initiatives and requests involving other federal, state, or local governmental agencies.

    2. Ensure all necessary information is provided to assist the GLs in supporting TE/GE requests.

    3. Act as the first point of contact for field GLs when assistance is needed to resolve inquiries from federal, state, or local governmental agencies on non-employment tax matters.

    4. Review requests from GLs that require the assistance of TE/GE HQ to ensure adequate information is available to facilitate HQ TE/GE responses to requests.

    5. Forward unresolved requests from field GLs to the TE/GE HQ contact for assistance.

    6. Monitor and follow-up on requests submitted to TE/GE HQ for response or resolution and communicate responses to field GLs.

    7. If a formal written technical response is needed, coordinate with the function to provide a response to the local GL.

Small Business/Self-Employed (SB/SE)

  1. GL Responsibilities:

    1. Conduct appropriate research using available resources to respond to the requestor whether formally or informally.

    2. Coordinate, as appropriate, local requests for assistance with local SB/SE staff.

    3. Elevate issues to the GL Chief if additional support or assistance is needed to resolve issues in coordination with appropriate local management officials or if local relationships with agencies do not exist.

    4. Forward unresolved requests to the GL HQ/Policy analyst assigned to SB/SE. The GL will provide his/her research results to the GL/HQ Policy analyst to expedite resolving the request for assistance.

    5. Monitor and follow-up on requests submitted to SB/SE or to GL/HQ Policy to ensure that a timely response is provided to the state, federal or local governmental agency.

  2. SB/SE Responsibilities:

    1. Assign a liaison from each function in each local office where a GL is located (Collection, Examination, Specialty Programs and others).

    2. Provide timely technical guidance to enable GL to respond to state, federal and local governmental agency inquiries and will determine local points of contact.

    3. Provide formal written responses when required.

    4. Resolve local issues with the GL Chief, as necessary.

  3. GL HQ/Policy Responsibilities:

    1. Review requests from the SB/SE HQ office for the assistance of local GLs to ensure all appropriate information is included to assist GLs in responding to requests.

    2. Review requests for assistance from field GLs and respond, if possible. Request additional information, if needed.

    3. Forward unresolved requests from field GLs to the SB/SE HQ contact for assistance.

    4. Monitor and follow-up on requests submitted to SB/SE HQ for response or resolution and communicate responses to field GLs.

    5. If a formal written technical response is needed, coordinate with the function to provide a response to the local GL.

Large Business and International (LB&I)

  1. GL Responsibilities:

    1. Conduct appropriate research using available resources to respond to the requester, whether formally or informally.

    2. Coordinate, as appropriate, local requests for assistance with local LB&I staff.

    3. Elevate issues to the GL Chief if additional support or assistance is needed to resolve issues in coordination with appropriate local management officials or if local relationships with agencies do not exist.

    4. Forward unresolved requests to the GL/HQ Policy analyst assigned to LB&I. The GL will provide his/her research results to the GL/HQ Policy analyst to expedite resolving the request for assistance.

    5. Monitor requests submitted to LB&I or to GL HQ/Policy to ensure that a timely response is provided to the state, federal or local governmental agency.

  2. LB&I Responsibilities:

    1. Assign a liaison from each function in each local office where a GL is located.

    2. Provide timely technical guidance to enable GL to respond to state, federal and local governmental agency inquiries and determine local points of contact.

    3. Provide formal written responses, when required.

    4. Resolve local issues with the GL Chief, as necessary.

  3. GL HQ/Policy Responsibilities:

    1. Review requests from the LB&I HQ Office for the assistance of local GLs to ensure all appropriate information is included to assist GLs in responding to requests.

    2. Review requests for assistance from field GLs and respond, if possible. Request additional information, if needed.

    3. Forward unresolved requests from field GLs to the LB&I HQ contact for assistance.

    4. Monitor and follow-up on requests submitted to LB&I HQ for response or resolution and communicate responses to field GLs.

    5. If a formal written technical response is needed, coordinate with the function to provide a response to the local GL.

Disaster and Emergency Situations

  1. In a federally-declared disaster and emergency situation the GL will support efforts to provide assistance, reduce burden, and provide relief to the impacted taxpayers. See IRM 25.16.1, Disaster Assistance and Emergency Relief, and the Disaster Assistance web site at the following: http://mysbse.web.irs.gov/opsupport/hc/facilitiesorganizationalsupport/continuityofop/disaster/default.aspx. The GL HQ/Policy Disaster Assistance Coordinator will direct the GL Disaster Response. There are 10 GL Regional Disaster Assistance Coordinators (RDACs) that have the major role in GL Disaster Response. Field GLs will work closely with the RDAC in coordinating the disaster response.

  2. The GL will identify state taxing authorities whose states or districts are impacted by a disaster and provide information to them as to the steps being taken to assist disaster victims with their tax affairs.

  3. RDACs will contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to obtain the locations of Disaster Recovery Centers and coordinate information with the State Disaster Assistance Coordinator in CSO, Field.

  4. The GL will assist CSO, as necessary, in coordinating with state departments of revenue to staff the FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers.

  5. The GL will assist, as necessary, with information dissemination.

  6. The GL will use and timely update the Crisis Communication Plan.

  7. RDACs and GLs, upon direction from the GL HQ/Policy Disaster Coordinator, will staff FEMA Joint Field Operations (JFOs), when assigned. JFOs are generally established for large-scale disasters.

Speaker Request Procedures

  1. Speaking at meetings, conferences and other forums, and participating in seminars or meetings provide excellent opportunities for IRS representatives to share information with external governmental agency partners. The IRS strategic plan and business unit business plans and priorities will drive decisions on whether to provide speakers to external agency requesters, in accordance with IRS Policy Statement 11-93, regarding speaking, writing engagements and contacts with outside groups. See IRM 1.2.19.1.8, Policy Statement 11-93 (Formerly P-1-181).

  2. State departments of revenue, other federal state and local agencies may request IRS speakers for various reasons. These requests could range from IRS procedural issues to filing season updates and tax law changes. Many of the requests will be for local purposes, such as staff meetings, CPEs and other training. For example, a state revenue agency may be involved in planning an FTA meeting or conference and may want a business unit subject matter expert or other speaker from IRS senior management or executive staff.

  3. To help achieve the best results for external agency needs, the GL staff will follow the procedures below to secure a speaker upon receiving a request from an external agency (other than for IRS Commissioner or Deputy Commissioners, which are covered in IRM 11.4.1.20(5).

    1. The GL will complete all items on the applicable OD/FD speaker request form, available on the GL SharePoint site, and obtain the approval of the appropriate GL Chief. Incomplete request forms may be returned.

    2. After approval by the GL Chief, the GL will attempt to obtain a speaker (other than for ID Theft or TE/GE speakers) through the Stakeholder Relationship Management Local Council speakers cadre.

    3. Generally, if the state/area does not have an SRMLC speakers cadre, the GL will contact local OD/FD management (Territory Manager (TM) or Area Manager (AM)) to attempt to secure a speaker for the agency.

    4. For other OD/FD requests, if the GL is unable to obtain a local speaker using the above resources, or if a headquarters level speaker is requested, he/she will forward the approved speaker request form, via email, to the GL/HQ Policy Speaker Request Coordinator (SRC) for further processing assistance. If the speaker request was denied at the local level, the GL will provide the reason for the denial. Generally, if the state/area does not have an SRMLC speakers cadre, the GL will contact local business unit management (Territory Manager (TM) or Area Manager (AM)) to attempt to secure a speaker for the agency.

    5. The GL/HQ policy SRC will review speaker requests approved by the GL Chief for completeness and will attempt to secure a speaker using available OD/FD resources and contacts.

    6. The GL/HQ Policy SRC will forward speaker requests for ODs/FDs other than TE/GE to the appropriate functional Speaker Request Coordinator, request an estimated response date, and share the information with the GL.

    7. The GL HQ/Policy SRC will advise the GL if the request is approved and the name of the speaker, if different than the speaker requested, or will provide the reason for denial of the request, if available.

    8. The GL will follow-up with the GL/HQ Policy SRC, if necessary.

    9. The GL will provide the name of the speaker to the requesting agency.

  4. Requests Received in GL HQ/Policy

    1. GL HQ/Policy staff who receive speaker requests for headquarters-level speakers, excluding the IRS Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners, will prepare the applicable speaker request form, as above, obtain the approval of the GL HQ/Policy Chief, and forward the request via email to the GL HQ/Policy SRC for processing.

    2. If the GL HQ/Policy SRC is unable to secure the requested speaker, he/she will ascertain the reason for non-approval, if available, and advise the referring analyst accordingly.

  5. Speaker requests for the IRS Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners.

    1. GL field and HQ staff will immediately forward speaker request forms for the IRS Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners, using the appropriate request form (below), via email to the GL HQ/Policy SRC after approval by the appropriate GL Chief or the GL HQ/Policy Chief.
      i. IRS Commissioner, Governmental Liaison staff will complete and forward to the GL HQ/Policy SRC the approved Form 14148-C, Commissioner of Internal Revenue Speaking Request Form, to request the attendance of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue for events and speaking engagements.
      ii. Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement, Governmental Liaison, will complete and forward to the GL HQ/Policy SRC the approved Form 14148-DCSE, Speaking Request Form for Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement.

    2. The GL HQ/Policy SRC will review approved requests and will obtain the further approval of the Associate Director, GL, before taking further action to process the requests.

    3. After obtaining the approval of the Associate Director, GL, the HQ GL/Policy SRC will process the requests as follows:
      i. IRS Commissioner. Governmental Liaison staff will complete and forward to the GL HQ/Policy SRC the approved Form 14148-C, Commissioner of Internal Revenue-Speaking Request Form, to request the attendance of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue for events and speaking engagements. The GL HQ/Policy SRC will review and forward the request to the IRS Commissioner's office SRC for assistance.
      ii. Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement (DCSE). Governmental Liaison staff will complete and forward to the GL HQ/Policy SRC the approved Form 14148-DCSE, Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement - Speaking Request Form, to request the attendance of the Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement for events and speaking engagements. The GL HQ/Policy SRC will review and forward the request to the DCSE SRC for assistance.
      iii. Deputy Commissioner for Operations Support (DCOS). Governmental Liaison staff will complete and forward to the GL HQ/Policy SRC the approved Form 14148-DCOS, Deputy Commissioner for Operations Support Speaking Request Form, to request the attendance of the DCOS for events and speaking engagements. The GL HQ/Policy SRC will review and forward the request to the DCOS SRC for assistance.

Visits by Foreign Tax Officials

  1. The International Visitors' Program (IVP) provides foreign officials with opportunities for discussion with IRS officials and observation of IRS operations. Depending on the content of the program, the visit may be held at the IRS headquarters office, a field office, or a campus site. The Associate Director, GL or the local GL may be asked to either support a program as a speaker or to secure a speaker from a state tax office.

  2. Requests should be received from the foreign government official, but may also come from the following:

    1. IRS Tax Attaché

    2. Foreign Government Embassies in Washington, DC

    3. Department of State

    4. The World Bank

  3. All applicants must complete the IVP Application. The IVP application and detailed information about the IVP is available at:
    https://www.irs.gov/businesses/international-businesses/internal-revenue-service-international-visitors-program-ivp
    Completed IVP applications will be sent via email to the Manager, IRS International Visitors Program or by fax to (202) 283-8571.

  4. Applicants with questions regarding the program should call 202-283-8395 or 8445.

GL/CSO Stakeholders Chart

CSO Stakeholders GL Stakeholders CSO-GL Joint Potential
Practitioner associations (APA, Tax Forums, TPI)   • GL may assist with getting state agency input, as needed, for forums, etc. CSO may get a better response from the associations if associations can get one-stop information, including from federal, state, and local governmental agencies.
Small Business Associations/ Organizations (includes industries)   • CSO works with SBA/SCORE and related agencies to provide outreach and information to practitioners, although SBA, as a governmental agency, is a GL stakeholder.
• GL may work with CSO and SBA on a "Government Fair," one-stop outreach with practitioners, and agencies to reach mutual taxpayer customers.
Individual practitioners    
Universities    
Banking institutions and credit unions    
  All Federal agencies (SBA/Score, FEMA, SSA, Department of Homeland Security) •Communications and Stakeholder Outreach is the primary IRS contact for disaster assistance. GL contacts FEMA to coordinate between IRS and FEMA. CSO ultimately provides the field support role with FEMA and taxpayers.
• CSO has an ongoing relationship with SBA to leverage resources for outreach to practitioner and small business organizations.
• CSO writes the IRS portion of the SSA Reporter. GLs receive this document so they will be aware of issues that might affect their state stakeholder and partner organizations.

Note:

GL is the local contact for any federal, state, or local agency, to initiate any project or outreach that involves IRS and the agency.

  State agencies (State Department of Revenue, State Workforce Agencies and State Agencies)  
  Local Government  
  Federation of Tax Administrators  
CSO    

GL MOU Template

MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING BETWEEN THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE AND THE [NAME OF AGENCY]
 
1. INTRODUCTION: This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the [insert name of state or local agency] (Agency) sets forth the agreement of the parties with respect to an initiative to ….
2. AUTHORITY: This MOU is entered into between the IRS and the Agency pursuant to Internal Revenue Code Section ….. This MOU is supported by [insert Basic or Implementing Agreement as appropriate.]
3. PURPOSE: The purpose of this initiative is to ….
4. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE IRS:
A. The IRS will ….
B. If this MOU has exhibits or attachments that can be updated (i.e., due to personnel changes) without the entire MOU being re-executed, the following language must be included: “Each party to the MOU shall be responsible for ensuring the information in Exhibit X or Attachment Y is current. Any changes shall be made by providing a revised exhibit/attachment to the Agency within 30 days of the change.” An example of this follows: The IRS will designate, in writing, those agents assigned to this initiative. See Exhibit A for a list of authorized agents and Exhibit B for a list of joint examinations. Each party to the MOU shall be responsible for ensuring the information in Exhibit A and/or B is current. Any changes shall be made by providing a revised exhibit within 30 days of the change.
5. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE AGENCY:
A. The Agency will ….
B. If this MOU has exhibits or attachments that can be updated (i.e., due to personnel changes) without the entire MOU being re-executed, the following language must be included: “Each party to the MOU shall be responsible for ensuring the information in Exhibit X or Attachment Y is current. Any changes shall be made by providing a revised exhibit/attachment to the IRS within 30 days of the change.” An example of this follows: The Agency will designate, in writing, those agency employees assigned to this initiative. See Exhibit A for a list of agency employees and Exhibit B for a list of joint examinations. Each party to the MOU shall be responsible for ensuring the information in Exhibit A and/or B is current. Any changes shall be made by providing a revised exhibit within 30 days of the change.
6. SAFEGUARDS, DISCLOSURE AND RECORD KEEPING REQUIREMENTS: (If the MOU involves FTI, this section will be included):
A. Agency will maintain all federal tax returns and return information (FTI) sourced from the IRS in accordance with IRC section 6103(p)(4) and comply with the safeguards requirements set forth in Publication 1075, Tax Information Security Guidelines for Federal, State and Local Agencies, which is the IRS published guidance for security guidelines and other safeguards for protecting returns and return information pursuant to 26 CFR 301.6103(p)(4)-1. IRS safeguarding requirements require:
(i) Agency will establish a central point of control for all requests for and receipt of FTI, and maintain a log to account for all subsequent disseminations and products made with/from that information, and movement of the information until destroyed, in accordance with Publication 1075, section 3.0.
(ii) Agency will establish procedures for secure storage of FTI consistently maintaining two barriers of protection to prevent unauthorized access to the information, including when in transit, in accordance with Publication 1075, section 4.0.
(iii) Agency will consistently label FTI obtained under this MOU to make it clearly identifiable and to restrict access by unauthorized individuals. Any duplication or transcription of FTI creates new records which must also be properly accounted for and safeguarded. Federal tax returns and return information should not be commingled with other Agency records unless the entire file is safeguarded in the same manner as required for FTI and the FTI within is clearly labeled in accordance with Publication 1075, section 5.0.
(iv) Agency will restrict access to FTI solely to officers and employees of Agency whose duties require access for the purposes of carrying out this MOU. Prior to access, Agency must evaluate which employees require such access. Authorized individuals may only access FTI to the extent necessary to perform services related to this MOU, in accordance with Publication 1075, section 5.0.
(v) Prior to initial access to FTI, and annually thereafter, Agency will ensure that employees and officers who will have access to FTI receive awareness training regarding the confidentiality restrictions applicable to the FTI and certify acknowledgement, in writing, that they are informed of the criminal penalties and civil liability provided by IRC 7213, IRC 7213A and IRC 7431 for any willful disclosure or inspection of FTI that is not authorized by the IRC, in accordance with Publication 1075, section 6.0.
(vi) Agency will submit an annual Safeguard Security Report (SSR) to the Office of Safeguards by the submission deadline specified in Publication 1075, Section 7.0, to provide an update on safeguarding activities during the reporting period and provide Head of Agency certification that the SSR addresses all Outstanding Actions identified by the Office of Safeguards from Agency’s prior year’s SSR; that it accurately and completely reflects Agency’s current environment for the receipt, storage, processing and transmission of FTI; that it accurately reflects the security controls in place to protect the FTI in accordance with Publication 1075; of the Agency’s commitment to assist the Office of Safeguards in the joint effort of protecting the confidentiality of FTI; report all data incidents involving FTI to the Office of Safeguards and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) timely and that the Agency will cooperate with TIGTA and Office of Safeguards investigators, providing data and access, as needed, to determine the facts and circumstances of the incident; support the Office of Safeguards on-site review to assess Agency compliance with Publication 1075 requirements, by means of manual and automated compliance and vulnerability assessment testing, including coordination with information technology (IT) divisions to secure pre-approval, if needed, for automated system scanning and to support timely mitigation of identified risk to FTI in Agency’s Corrective Action Plan (CAP) for as long as Agency maintains FTI. Required reports will be transmitted in electronic format and on the template provided by Office of Safeguards, using an IRS-approved encryption method in accordance with Publication 1075, Section 7.0.
(vii) Agency will ensure that FTI is properly destroyed or returned to the IRS when no longer needed, based on established Agency record retention schedules, in accordance with Publication 1075, section 8.0.
(viii) Agency will conduct periodic internal inspections of facilities where FTI is maintained to ensure IRS safeguarding requirements are met and will permit the IRS access to such facilities, as needed, to review the extent to which Agency is complying with the IRC section 6103(p)(4) requirements of this section.
B. Generally, this agreement covers secure electronic transmission of FTI to the Agency, provided the Agency’s computer systems are compliant with Section 3544(a)(1)(A)(ii) of the Federal Information Security Management Act of 2002 (FISMA) or National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Publication 800-53 standards and guidance for security of data at the moderate impact level. The Agency’s SSR must fully describe the computer system and security controls implemented for the receipt, processing, storage, and transmission of electronic FTI. Required security controls for systems that receive, process, store and transmit electronic FTI are specified in Publication 1075, section 9.0.
Any receipts of FTI in paper format must also be fully disclosed in the Agency’s SSR. Required security controls associated with the receipt, processing and storage of any FTI received in paper format are specified in previously mentioned sections of Publication 1075.
C. Agency agrees to report suspected unauthorized inspection or disclosure of FTI within 24 hours of discovery to the appropriate Agent-in-Charge, TIGTA, and to the IRS Office of Safeguards, as specified in Publication 1075, section 10.0.
D. Agency officers and employees may have access to FTI obtained under this MOU. Agency may not allow contractor personnel access to FTI for any purpose, unless expressly authorized by the IRC.
[FOR MOUs WITH STATE TAX AGENCIES OR OTHER AGENCIES THAT SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZE CONTRACTOR ACCESS BASED ON THE IRC, CONTINUE PARAGRAPH D, AS FOLLOWS:]
When contractor access to FTI is expressly authorized by the IRC, Agency must ensure that contracts with contractors and subcontractors performing work involving FTI contain specific language requiring compliance with IRC section 6103(p)(4) and Publication 1075 safeguard requirements and enforces Agency’s right to, and permits IRS access to, contractor and subcontractor facilities to conduct periodic internal inspections where FTI is maintained to ensure IRS safeguarding requirements are met.
E. Agency officers and employees who inspect or disclose FTI obtained pursuant to this MOU in a manner or for a purpose not so authorized by the IRC are subject to the criminal sanction provisions of IRC 7213 and IRC 7213A, and 18 U.S.C., section 1030(a)(2), as may be applicable. In addition, the Agency could be required to defend a civil damages action under IRC 7431.
F. IRS will conduct periodic safeguard reviews of the Agency to assess whether security and confidentiality of FTI is maintained consistent with the safeguarding protocols described in Publication 1075, the Agency’s SSR and in accordance with the terms of this agreement. Periodic safeguard reviews will involve the inspection of Agency facilities and contractor facilities where FTI is maintained; the testing of technical controls for computer systems storing, processing or transmitting FTI; review of Agency recordkeeping and policies and interviews of Agency employees and contractor employees, as needed, to verify the use of FTI and assess the adequacy of procedures established to protect FTI.
G. Agency recognizes and treats all Safeguards documents and related communications as IRS official agency records; that they are property of the IRS; that IRS records are subject to disclosure restrictions under federal law and IRS rules and regulations and may not be released publicly under state Sunshine or Information Sharing/Open Records provisions and that any requestor seeking access to IRS records should be referred to the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) statute. If the Agency determines that it is appropriate to share Safeguard documents and related communications with another governmental function/branch for the purposes of operational accountability or to further facilitate protection of FTI that the recipient governmental function/branch must be made aware, in unambiguous terms, that Safeguard documents and related communications are property of the IRS; that they constitute IRS official agency records; that any request for the release of IRS records is subject to disclosure restrictions under federal law and IRS rules and regulations and that any requestor seeking access to IRS records should be referred to the federal FOIA statute. [For MOUs/agreements with Federal agencies add: “Federal agencies in receipt of FOIA requests for Safeguards documents must forward them to IRS for reply.”]
H. The [Title of the IRS person responsible for record keeping and accounting] will ensure that all requirements for recordkeeping and accounting for disclosures are met in accordance with IRC section 6103(p)(3) and its implementing regulations.
I. List any other disclosure guidance applicable to the MOU (i.e., non-disclosure of information protected by governmental, attorney/client privilege, or attorney work product privileges consistent with applicable laws, or any other information that is prohibited from disclosure-- IRM 11.3..32.17; non-disclosure of return information that would identify a confidential informant or seriously impair any civil or criminal tax investigation; etc).
7. TRANSMITTAL PROCEDURES: (If the MOU involves FTI, this section would be included):
A. All information exchanged will include a Document Transmittal, (Form 3210 or equivalent) or other means of verifying receipt with a count of documents by type and a brief description of the information being provided.
B. The Document Transmittal and documents will be inserted in an envelope marked "TO BE OPENED BY ADDRESSEE ONLY" and inscribed with the name of the official designated to receive the information. The package will be hand delivered to the designated official or mailed via the United States Postal Service, Federal Express, United Parcel Service, or a Federally accredited expedited mail delivery service, in a second envelope inscribed with the address of the designated official.
8. LIABILITY:
A. Each party to this MOU shall be liable for the acts and omissions of its own employees.
B. The IRS shall not be liable for any injury to another party’s personnel or damage to another party’s property unless such injury or damage is compensable under the Federal Tort Claims Act [28 U.S.C. 1346(b)], or pursuant to other Federal statutory authority. Similarly, the Agency shall not be liable for any injury to another party’s personnel or damage to another party’s property unless such injury or damage is compensable under applicable state or local law.
9. THIRD PARTY RIGHTS: This MOU does not confer any rights or benefits on any third party.
10. PRIVACY: The IRS and the Agency will assure the integrity and accuracy of personal and financial data. The IRS and the Agency will perform their duties in a manner that recognizes and enhances individuals’ rights of privacy and will make certain that their activities are consistent with law, regulations, and good administrative practices.
11. EFFECTIVE DATE: The effective date of this MOU is the date it has been signed by all parties to the Agreement.
12. AMENDMENT OF MOU: This MOU may be amended by deletion or modification of any provisions, provided that such amendment is in writing and is signed by all parties to the MOU.
13. TERMINATION OF MOU: This MOU may be cancelled upon [agreed-upon number] days written notice by either the IRS or the Agency or immediately by signed agreement of the IRS and the Agency.
14. LIMITATIONS: The terms of this MOU are not intended to alter, amend, or rescind any current agreement or provision of federal law now in effect. Any provision of this MOU which conflicts with federal law will be null and void.
15. EVALUATION OF DATA EXCHANGE: (Use this wording if the MOU will include a data exchange of federal tax information, personally identifiable information or other sensitive but unclassified information)
The IRS and the Agency will review this MOU, periodically, to evaluate the data exchange, examine the continuing needs for and uses of the exchanged data, and determine whether the MOU requires amendment, revision or termination. Parties to the review will include the IRS Governmental Liaison, Disclosure, Office of Safeguards, Business Operating Division and the Agency Liaison, at a minimum. These parties will determine the method of review (conference call, meeting, email).
15. EVALUATION OF AGREEMENT: (Use this wording if there is no data to be exchanged and/or this is a customer service type of MOU)
The IRS and the Agency will review this MOU, periodically, to determine whether the MOU requires amendment, revision or termination and whether the agencies are complying with the provisions of the MOU. Parties to the review will include the IRS Governmental Liaison, the Business Operating Division and the Agency Liaison, at a minimum. These parties will determine the method of review (conference call, meeting, email).
 
MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING BETWEEN THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE AND THE [NAME OF AGENCY]
APPROVALS:
INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE
________________________________
Signature
________________________________
Title
________________________________
Date
 
STATE OF [Name of State]
Agency: [Name of Agency]
________________________________
Signature
________________________________
Title
________________________________
________________________________
Date

Acronyms

The following table contains definitions for the acronyms used in this IRM:

Acronym Definition
AFOIA Automated Freedom of Information Act
BA Basic Agreement
CAS Customer Account Service (TE/GE)
CSO Communications and Stakeholder Outreach
CSS Customer Service Strategy
DCSE Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement
DCOS Deputy Commissioner for Operations Support
DM Disclosure Manager
DS Data Services
FEMA Federal Emergency Management Agency
FIP Federal Intergovernmental Program
FSLG Federal, state and local governments
FTA Federation of Tax Administrators
FTI Federal tax information
GL Governmental Liaison
GLADIS Governmental Liaison and Data Services Information System
GLIDe GL Initiative Development Guide
GLDEP Governmental Liaison Data Exchange Program
GLDS Governmental Liaison, Disclosure and Safeguards
IA Implementing Agreement
IAD IRS Agreement Database
IRP Identity and Records Protection
IVP International Visitors Program
IT Information Technology
LB&I Large Business and International
MAPP Municipal Agency Partnering Program
MeF Modernized eFile
MOU Memorandum of Understanding
MTC Multistate Tax Commission
OD/FD Operating Division/Functional Division
PGLD Privacy, Governmental Liaison and Disclosure
PPC Privacy Policy and Compliance
QETP Questionable Employment Tax Practices
RDAC Regional Disaster Assistance Coordinator
SB/SE Small Business/Self Employed
SITLP State Income Tax Levy Program
SOI Statistics of Income
SRFMI State Reversal File Match Initiative
SRM Stakeholder Relationship Management
SRMLC Stakeholder Relationship Management Local Council
SSR Safeguard Security Report
TDS Transcript Delivery System
TE/GE Tax Exempt/Government Entities
TOP Treasury Offset Program
W&I Wage and Investment