- 8.10.3 Appeals Inventory Validation Process
- 126.96.36.199 Validation of Appeals Centralized Database System (ACDS)
- 188.8.131.52 Appeals Inventory Validation Process (AIVP)
- 184.108.40.206 Validation Tracking System (VTS)
- 220.127.116.11.1 Critical Data Field
- 18.104.22.168.2 Reason Codes
- 22.214.171.124.3 ACDS Update Request Form
- 126.96.36.199.4 Other System Updates
- 188.8.131.52.5 Validation Format and Functions
- 184.108.40.206.6 Validation Types
- 220.127.116.11.7 Statute Validation
- 18.104.22.168.7.1 IDRS Updates
- 22.214.171.124.8 Appeals Technical Employee (ATE) Validations
- 126.96.36.199.8.1 ATE - Anniversary Validation Listing
- 188.8.131.52.9 Appeals Team Manager (ATM) Validations
- 184.108.40.206.10 Tax Examiner (TE) Validations
- 220.127.116.11.11 Processing Team Manager (PTM) Validations
- 18.104.22.168.12 Secretary Validation
- 22.214.171.124 Validation Tracking Log (VTL)
- 126.96.36.199 Physical Validation
- 188.8.131.52.1 Appeals Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report (AD2LIV)
- 184.108.40.206.1.1 Cases in ATM's Possession
- 220.127.116.11.1.2 Cases in APS' Possession
- 18.104.22.168.1.3 Cases in Tax Computation Specialist (TCS) Inventory
- 22.214.171.124.1.4 Cases in Chief Counsel's Possession
- 126.96.36.199.1.5 Missing Case or Tax Return
- 188.8.131.52.2 ATE Case Inventory List
- 184.108.40.206.3 Physical Inventory Validation for Appeals Processing Services (APS)
- 220.127.116.11.4 Managerial Certification
- Exhibit 8.10.3-1 Managerial Certification Memorandum
- Exhibit 8.10.3-2 Missing Case Report
Part 8. Appeals
Chapter 10. Appeals Reports and Projects
Section 3. Appeals Inventory Validation Process
August 24, 2015
(1) This revises IRM 8.10.3, Appeals Inventory Validation Process.
(1) This revision:
Describes the Appeals Inventory Validation Process (AIVP).
Describes and incorporates guidance related to implementation of the AIVP programming in the Appeals Centralized Database System (ACDS).
Describes and provides requirements and procedures for using the Validation Tracking System (VTS).
Describes and provides requirements and procedures for using the Validation Tracking Log (VTL).
Describes methods for conducting a physical inventory validation.
Provides guidance for Appeals Area Directors to determine the method their Areas will use to conduct physical inventory validations.
Explains ways to conduct a physical validation of an Appeals Technical Employee's inventory.
Describes and provides requirements and procedures for using the Appeals Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report (AD2LIV).
Explains ways to conduct a physical validation of Account and Processing Support (APS) inventory and a Tax Examiner's inventory.
Removes the requirement to report physical inventory results to the Director, Policy, Quality and Case Support. Requires Area Directors to report physical inventory results to their respective Director.
John V. Cardone
Director, Policy, Quality and Case Support
All employees share responsibility for ACDS data accuracy and quality. Database validation ensures ACDS is as accurate as possible at all times. It is important to identify and correct data errors throughout the case's life cycle.
Inventory validation ensures the following:
Control of case inventory in Appeals’ jurisdiction
Verification of statute of limitation dates
Quality and reliability of data in ACDS
This section establishes requirements for inventory validations to ensure case files and tax returns in Appeals' possession are properly controlled on ACDS and data reflected in the database is accurate.
All employees who establish cases on ACDS, or who are assigned cases and tax returns for resolution of tax matters, are responsible for controlling and validating Appeals' inventory of case files and tax returns.
Validating inventory, statute dates, and database accuracy involves both automated and physical validation methods.
Automated validation of critical data fields is accomplished through the Validation Tracking System (VTS), which systemically requires users to perform case validations throughout the life cycle of each case in Appeals' inventory.
Physical validation is accomplished through physical inspection of case files and is conducted as an "ACDS Drawer-to-List Validation" . Taking into consideration resources and budget constraints, each Area Director can approve the use of an alternative method to conduct physical validations. Examples of alternative methods include: physical validation of a statistically valid sample of cases, physical validation of all or part of the inventory of one or more co-located employees, delegating physical validation to a proxy, or any other method approved by the Area Director. Appeals Team Managers (ATM) and Processing Team Managers (PTM) are responsible for completing the physical validation process jointly with their employees who are assigned an inventory of cases. For the purpose of efficiency managers could also complete an annual "ACDS Drawer-to-List Validation" validation in conjunction with a workload review when possible.
The VTS was designed to make it easier to achieve data accuracy and improve the data quality of the ACDS database. The VTS systemically requires validation at various designated points in the life cycle of all cases in Appeals inventory.
The VTS allows users to confirm that the data in ACDS is accurate at the time of validation. If an update is needed, the user may update, change or modify entries in any of the current critical data fields they have permission to change. See IRM 18.104.22.168.1 (2) for a list of critical data fields by position and validation type. All updates, changes or modifications made to critical data fields through the VTS post on ACDS immediately.
The system requires validation of critical data fields at the following designated points in the life cycle of the case:
Case receipt (card-in)
Anniversary (over 365 days old)
A critical data field is an ACDS data field identified as essential to ensuring that Appeals’ data is accurate and reliable. A data field is designated critical by headquarters.
A document listing Critical Data Fields by position and validation type is posted on the Appeals website. Use the hyperlink in this paragraph or navigate to the document from the Appeals "Home" page by clicking on Strategy & Finance → (Business Systems Planning) Webpage → All Applications (under the heading "Applications" ) → AIVP VTS → Critical Data Fields (under the heading "Resources" ).
Users are required to make a determination as to the nature of the change to a critical data field and designate a reason code:
Normal Update (N) - No one is "charged" with an error when a change is designated as a normal update.
Error Correction (E) - The prior team in possession of the case is "charged" with an error when a change is designated as an error correction.
Reason codes are captured as part of the ACDS data accuracy calculation and reports.
A normal update is a change to a critical data field that is required as part of normal case management. Examples of normal updates include:
Changing an address because the taxpayer or the representative moved while the case was in process
Changing the statute date or code because you executed a statute extension
Changing the statute date or code because you received an agreement during the 90-day period
Changing the statute date or code because of an event or tax law, such as bankruptcy or TEFRA,
Removing Tax Period Modifier "N" because you received the original return
Adding Tax Period Modifier "N" because the original return was copied and refiled
Removing a Feature Code because the feature no longer applies, such as when a case is no longer a "Quick Look" case.
An error correction is a change to a critical data field because information on the system is not accurate based on source documents in your possession. This could be due to a incorrect determination or an input error. Examples of error corrections include:
Changing data due to key stroke errors
Changing the statute date or code due to statute determination errors
Adding Tax Period Modifier "N" if the original return was not in the file
Removing Tax Period Modifier "N" if present and the original return was in the file
An ACDS Update Request Form is available on APGolf to use to make an ACDS update request to APS. The VTS eliminates the need for most ACDS update requests to APS. The ATE must update critical data fields on their assigned cases from the VTS unless the case is in APS' possession. APS will reject ACDS update requests that the ATE is required to make. When an update to ACDS is needed that cannot be made through the VTS, APS will make the update to ACDS upon receipt of an ACDS Update Request Form. See IRM 22.214.171.124, ACDS and AIMS Update and Correction Procedures, for the procedures and timeframes for APS to complete the ACDS update.
To update a non-timesheet case through the VTS, access the validations menu by clicking the "Validations" button at the bottom of the "search case results screen" . Non-timesheet cases are not accessible from CARATS. Non-timesheet cases are related records linked to timesheet cases with the same workunit number.
If an ACDS update made through the VTS requires APS to make an update to another related system (for example, ISTS), submit an update request to APS, using the appropriate form or format for the related system.
All of the validation screens display the current data on the system for each critical data field in a column headed "Original Data." The person validating the case makes changes to critical data fields in the column headed "Data" by either entering new data in write-in fields or making a selection from a drop-down list, if one is provided. For each change made, the user must check a box to indicate whether the change was a "normal update" or "error correction." See IRM 126.96.36.199.2, Reason Codes.
All of the validation screens provide the user with options to:
Save Draft and Exit - this option allows the user to save changes as a draft and exit the screen and return later to complete the validation. Any changes saved as draft will remain on the system for 30 calendar days from the date of the last update saved as draft. Only the person who saved the draft can view the draft. A dialog box will appear after the user clicks the button to confirm that the validation was saved as a draft. Click OK to Exit the validation screen.
Validate - this option submits the user's changes, or, if no changes were made, validates that the information on the system is accurate. The user should click the Validate button only after reviewing all data on the screen and determining that it’s correct. After the user clicks the "Validate" button, the system displays a message confirming that the validation was successful. When Validate is clicked, the change is immediately written to ACDS. New CARATS Action Code VA is systemically generated when a validation is submitted.
Cancel - this option deletes all changes input on the screen and returns the user to the previous screen. A dialog box appears warning the user the change will not be saved, asking, "Are you sure you want to exit without saving or validating?" Click "Yes," and the system will cancel the changes and return to the previous screen. Click "No" and the screen remains available for updates.
Print - this option allows users to print the validation screen. The print button is located in the top right hand corner of the screen.
Help - this option opens a pop-up window that explains the validation process. The button is located next to the print option in the top right hand corner of the screen.
The following is a list of validation types by position:
Validation Type Position Statute
Create Case TE Assignment ATE Anniversary ATE Sample
Workload ATM Closing
The assigned employee will perform a data accuracy validation, which includes a statute validation.
APS Tax Examiners (TEs) are required to verify case information as part of the card-in process, and will complete a "Create Case" validation in ACDS prior to sending the case to the Appeals Team Manager (ATM) for assignment or the Processing Team Manager (PTM) for sample validation.
Appeals Technical Employees (ATEs) are required to validate case information on all cases in their inventory, and will complete an "Assignment Validation" in VTS as directed for the procedures applicable to the workstream.
The "statute validation" lists only statute-related critical data fields:
See IRM 188.8.131.52.7.1, IDRS Updates, for information on updating IDRS when submitting a validation including a change to a statute date or statute code on a tax period controlled on ACDS with an AIMS Indicator "Y" .
APS users will also update IDRS when required whenever they update a statute date or statute code on ACDS.
When a non-APS user completes a validation that includes a change to a statute date or statute code on a tax period with an AIMS Indicator "Y" on ACDS, the system:
Selects the user's default PTM but allows the user to change the default selection, if needed, and
Creates a new PEAS case with PEAS Type = AIVP/Sub Type = AIMS in the selected PTM's inbox.
The systemic creation of an unassigned PEAS case ensures the IDRS statute date/code update will be assigned to an APS TE.
ATEs will ensure all assigned cases are properly controlled on ACDS
ATEs will validate critical data fields (CDF) using the Validation Tracking System (VTS). Once validated, ACDS updates made through VTS will display immediately.
All changes to critical data fields are tracked on the Validation Tracking Log (VTL), accessible from the CARATS screen menu.
ATEs may access the validations menu for their assigned cases by clicking the "Validations" link from CARATS or the "Validations" button at the bottom of the search case results screen. Some menu options may be "grayed out" or not listed when not systemically required. You must complete systemically required validations when required or the system will prevent subsequent updates. ATEs perform the following types of validations:
ATE - Assignment - systemically required when the ATE saves the CARATS entry CR/NR.
ATE - Anniversary - systemically required at the received date plus 365 days.
ATE - Closing - systemically required when the ATE saves the CARATS entry AC/FR
ATE - Other - this option is available at any time and includes all critical data fields open to the ATE for edit
ATE - Statute - this option available at any time and includes statute-related critical data fields open to the ATE for edit
The ATE will directly update all available critical data fields through the VTS. The ATE will designate each change identified as part of the validation process as either a Normal Update (N) or an Error Correction (E).
When a change is required that is not part of the VTS critical data fields, the ATE will prepare and submit an ACDS Update request to APS, identifying the required update, change or modification.
An Anniversary Validation is required when a case has been open in the Appeals inventory for more than 365 days. The Anniversary Validation supports the Appeals annual inventory validation requirement to review each case at least once every 365 days and is an opportunity to ensure ACDS data matches information in the source documents.
A system notification alerts the ATE that an Assignment validation is required. No further action can be taken on the case until the Anniversary Validation is completed, for each case in the work unit.
If there has not been a previous validation of the case, both the Assignment and Anniversary validations may be required.
An Anniversary Validation is not required if any of the following conditions are met:
The ATE completed the Assignment Validation within the previous 30 days.
The CAR shows AC/FR or AC/OD entry
The case shows ACAPDATE entry
The case is assigned in PEAS
The case has a DATECLSD and closing code >22 or = 45
The ATE - Anniversary Validation Listing is located on the Main Reports Menu. This is a listing of workunits that need an anniversary validation. The list contains the following information for each workunit listed:
ATMs may access the "Validations" menu for their team's assigned cases from the ATM main menu or from the search case results screen. Some menu options may be "grayed out" or not listed when not systemically required. ATMs perform the following types of validations:
ATM - Workload Review - this option is available at any time
ATM - Sample - required on a systemically selected sample of cases when the ATM enters the ATM approved date (ACAPDATE). The ATM Sample size is set by Headquarters. (Setting the sample size at zero removes the requirement to conduct the sample validation.)
ATM - Other - this option is available at any time and includes all critical data fields open to the ATM for edit
ATM - Statute - this option is available at any time and includes statute-related critical data fields open to the ATM for edit
TEs may access the "Validations" menu for any case they have permission to access from the search case results screen. Some menu options may be "grayed out" or not listed when not systemically required. TEs perform the following types of validations:
APS - Create Case - systemically required when the TE cards a case.
APS - Closing - systemically required when the TE closes a case
APS - Other - this option is available at any time and includes all critical data fields open to the TE for edit
APS - Statute - this option available at any time and includes statute-related critical data fields open to the TE for edit
PTMs may access the "Validations" menu for any case they have permission to access from the search case results screen. Some menu options may be "grayed out" or not listed when not systemically required. PTMs perform the following types of validations:
PTM - Sample - required on a systemically selected sample of cases when the APS TE cards the case on ACDS before it goes to the ATM for assignment. The PTM Sample size is set by Headquarters. (Setting the sample size at zero removes the requirement to conduct the sample validation.)
PTM - Other - this option is available at any time and includes all critical data fields open to the PTM for edit
PTM - Statute - this option is available at any time and includes statute-related critical data fields open to the PTM for edit
Secretaries may access the "Validations" menu for any case they have permission to access from the search case results screen. Some menu options may be "grayed out" or not listed when not systemically required. Secretaries may perform the "Secretary - Other" validation. This option is available at any time and includes only critical data fields related to preparing correct letters:
The Validation Tracking Log (VTL) lists all validations submitted on a case and can be used to interpret changes to critical data fields. All ACDS users have read-only access to the VTL.
To access the VTL, select the case from search results, then click on the VTL button for that case at the bottom of the search case screen. There are various other VTL entry points in ACDS, depending upon the user’s permissions.
The VTL displays data for one case at a time and includes the history of critical data field changes made through the VTS. You can view or print detailed information about each validation by clicking on the"plus" sign to expand the data for the validation type listed.
Physical validation is accomplished through physical inspection of case files. Physical validation is performed to ensure cases and tax returns assigned to or in the possession of employees for resolution of tax matters are established, processed or controlled on ACDS. A physical validation identifies:
Cases in possession of an Appeals employee but not controlled on ACDS.
Cases controlled on ACDS but not in the possession of an Appeals employee.
Erroneous statute of limitation dates and/or codes.
The physical validation process is commonly referred to as a "Drawer-to-List" validation. Each fiscal year, Appeals Team Managers (ATM) and Processing Team Managers (PTM), in collaboration with their employees who are assigned an inventory of cases, are responsible for conducting a physical validation. For efficiency, managers could complete the physical validation in conjunction with a workload review when possible.
ATMs can use the "ACDS Drawer-to-List Validation (AD2LIV)" to conduct a physical IVL in collaboration with their employees. The term Appeals Technical Employee (ATE) includes all employees who are assigned cases and tax returns on ACDS for resolution of tax matters. See IRM 8.1.1-1 for a definition of Appeals Technical Employee.
PTMs can use the "PEAS Inventory List" to conduct a physical IVL in collaboration with their employees. The term Tax Examiner (TE) includes all employees who are assigned cases to establish, process or control on ACDS.
Area Directors can approve using an alternative method to conduct physical validations.
The Appeals Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report (AD2LIV) is located on the Appeals Team Manager Functions menu.
The "Appeals Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report (AD2LIV)" was designed for ATMs to use when conducting a drawer-to-list physical IVL of all cases assigned to and in the possession of an ATE. It can be worked on-screen from ACDS without printing until the validation is completed.
Validate cases from the drawer to the list. Pull each administrative file in the ATE's possession and compare it to the listing.
When the report is initially displayed, the "Validated" checkbox will be checked for any case that has had an "ATM - Workload Review Validation" within the last 365 days by the ATM running the report.
To validate a case, click on the TPNAME hyperlink to open the "ATM - Workload Review Validation" for the case.
At a minimum, validate the accuracy of the following required critical data fields (CDFs):
Update the required CDFs as needed. You may also update any of the other CDFs included on the validation screen. After you've changed CDFs or determined no changes are needed, click "Validate."
When you are returned to the report after clicking "Validate," a check mark will appear in the "Validated" check box for the case. If you change one of the following CDFs, you will see the change when you are returned to the report:
Insert comments about each case, if warranted, by typing up to 250 characters in the "Comments" field.
Click "Save the Draft." to save the report in draft form when you are not able to complete the report in one sitting.
When all cases have been validated, thus inserting check marks into all of the "Validated" check boxes, the "IVL Completed" button will become enabled. Click on this button to finish the "Drawer to List" process. The "Print" dialog screen will then be displayed, giving you the opportunity to print the report.
Update ACDS to account for any administrative file in the ATE's physical possession and not on the listing.
Follow the procedures in IRM 184.108.40.206.1.5, Missing Case or Tax Return, for any case or tax return that is on the list but not in the drawer and not accounted for.
If a change is needed to a CDF that is not included on the "ATM - Workload Review Validation" , the ATE should use the "Other Validation" option.
The ATM will validate cases on the "Appeals Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report (AD2LIV)" that were closed to the ATM but do not have an ACAPDATE.
If a case is on the ATE’s Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report but clearly in APS' physical possession and ACDS research supports the determination of the location of the case, the ATM and ATE are not responsible for physically inspecting the file but must add appropriate comments to the Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report. Enter and save the comments and validate the case with no changes to critical data fields, to "check" the case off the report. Examples of appropriate comments include:
"ACAPDATE MM/DD/YYYY and assigned on PEAS for closing MM/DD/YYYY to (TE Name)"
"ACAPDATE MM/DD/YYYY and assigned on PEAS for interim assessment to (TE Name)"
"ACAPDATE MM/DD/YYYY and assigned on PEAS for SND (NOD) to (TE Name)"
"ACAPDATE MM/DD/YYYY and ACTION = STIPFF/STATUS = E/STP "
"ACAPDATE MM/DD/YYYY and SNTYPE = 090A/SNDATE = MM/DD/YYYY/STATUS = E/TSN"
If a case has been reviewed, approved and forwarded to APS but not assigned on PEAS, annotate the Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report with "ACAPDATE and not on PEAS" . Notify the PTM to locate the case. Do not validate the case until it has been accounted for. If the case cannot be located, follow the procedures in IRM 220.127.116.11.1.5, Missing Case or Tax Return.
TCS is not required to conduct a physical IVL. If a case needs to be validated and it's in TCS inventory, the TCS working the tax computation request is not responsible for validating the case. The ATM/ATE or PTM/TE will validate any case in TCS inventory on the inventory list.
Docketed cases in the possession of IRS Chief Counsel for trial preparation should be identified as "Part 3" on ACDS. "Part 3" cases are excluded on the Appeals Drawer to List Inventory Validation Report (AD2LIV). No other validation is required for "Part 3" cases in Counsel's possession.
If a docketed case is in Counsel’s physical possession for trial preparation but in "Part 2" on ACDS, then update the "Part" to "Part 3" .
If a docketed case is in Appeals' physical possession but listed as "Part 3" on ACDS, then update the "Part" to "Part 2" . Then, validate the case in Appeals’ possession.
Validate "Part 1" or "Part 2" cases in Counsel's physical possession, such as for decision document preparation, notice of deficiency review, OIC legal sufficiency review, etc. It may be necessary to retrieve the file to perform the validation.
List cases or tax returns that you could not locate during the physical validation on the Missing Case Report.
Include the plan of action for how the case was located or resolved on the Missing Case Report.
Include the Missing Case Report as an attachment to the Managerial Certification Memorandum.
Exhibit 8.10.3-2 provides a template for the Missing Case Report.
See also IRM 10.5.4.3, Reporting Losses, Thefts and Disclosures, and its subsections, for procedures on reporting the loss of sensitive information within one hour of discovery.
The ATE Case Inventory List is another validation report option within ACDS for ATEs. ATEs may generate an ACDS ATE Case Inventory List, (titled "AO Inventory List" ) as needed.
Generate a current ACDS ATE Case Inventory Listing as follows:
Step Action Required 1 The AO Inventory List is located under Reports→Case Inventory Reports→ AO Inventory List. 2 Employee’s name defaults to their name automatically. 3 Sort inventory by "KEYCASE+TPNAME" . 4 Select the button option that reads - "Print Part 3 and related WUNOs separately at bottom of listing."
APS inventory consists of assigned and unassigned inventory. APS conducts physical inventory validations using a variety of reports and methods, including:
Validation Tracking System - APS validates cases using the VTS when required by the system throughout the life cycle of the case.
PEAS Inventory List - The PTM can use this report to conduct a physical inventory validation of assigned cases with the Tax Examiner, preferably during a workload review.
Other inventory validation related reports - APS generates and works other inventory validation related reports related to controlling the physical location of assigned and unassigned cases and statutes, as required in IRM 8.10.1, Appeals Reports and Projects, Internal Reports.
Generate a current PEAS Inventory List as follows:
Step Action Required 1 Access the "PEAS Inventory List" located under APS→Reports→IVL 2 Select the employee from the drop-down list 3 Select "Just Cases in Inventory" 4 Sort by TPNAME 5 Check the box to "Include open PEAS cases with no open returns"
In addition to the PTM using this list for the physical IVL, the TE may generate and work this report on an as needed basis.
As required in IRM 8.10.1, Appeals Reports and Projects, Internal Reports , APS generates and works a variety of case inventory reports. The following case inventory reports and report parameters are also used for physical inventory validation:
ACDS Unassigned Report – Select the 2nd option and then select Action
Statutory Notice Report
Answer Y to question whether to include NPS cases
Enter Beginning SN Issued Date: Subtract one year from default date (first date of current month less one year)
Enter Ending SN Issued Date: Use default date (last date of current month).
Answer Y to question whether to print the earliest Statute Date
STIPFF (Stipulated Decision Documents for Filing) Alpha List - see IRM 18.104.22.168.3.1.12 (6), PROCEDURES FOR THE STIPFF ALPHA LIST.
Managers will follow their Area's instructions to certify conducting the physical IVL and results.
Areas will follow their Director's instructions to certify conducting the physical IVL and results.
See Exhibit 8.10.3-1. This exhibit provides a template to use as the Managerial Certification Memorandum.
|TO:||(Name and Title)|
|FROM:||(Certifying Manager's Name and Title)|
|SUBJECT:||FYXX Appeals Physical Inventory Validation - Managerial Certification |
|This memorandum serves as my certification that I have completed the FYXXphysical validation for the following employees on the following dates:|
|Employee Name||Date Validation Completed|
|[Employee Name]||[Date Completed]|
|[Insert additional rows as needed]|
|The following critical data fields were corrected during the physical inventory validation:|
|[Optional paragraph. Insert if required.] |
Cases and/or tax returns that could not be found are listed on the Missing Case Report attached to this memorandum.
|Please contact me if you have any questions or require additional information. |
[Certifying Manager’s Name]
[Certifying Manager’s Telephone Number]
[Certifying Manager’s email Address].
|Attachments:||Missing Case Report (If applicable)|