IRS Statement: IRS Seeks New Issues for the Industry Issue Resolution Program


Notice: Historical Content

This is an archival or historical document and may not reflect current law, policies or procedures.

Aug. 17, 2011

The Internal Revenue Service today encouraged business taxpayers, associations and other interested parties to submit to the Industry Issue Resolution (IIR) Program tax issues for resolution involving a controversy, a dispute or a potentially unnecessary burden on business taxpayers.

The objective of the IIR program is to resolve business tax issues common to significant numbers of taxpayers through new and improved guidance. In past years, issues have been submitted by associations and others representing both small and large business taxpayers, resulting in tax guidance that has affected thousands of taxpayers.

Recent submissions for inclusion in the IIR program and examples of guidance issued as a result of the IIR Program can be found on

For each issue selected, an IIR team of IRS and Treasury personnel gather relevant facts from taxpayers or other interested parties affected by the issue. The goal is to recommend guidance to resolve the issue. This benefits both taxpayers and the IRS by saving time and expense that would otherwise be expended on resolving the issue through examinations.

IIR project selections are based on the criteria set forth in Revenue Procedure 2003-36. For each issue selected, a multi-functional team of IRS, Chief Counsel and Treasury personnel will be assembled. The teams will gather and analyze the relevant facts from industry groups and taxpayers for each issue and recommend guidance.

Requests for guidance on tax issues under the IIR program can be submitted at any time to Submissions received are reviewed semi-annually with selections next being made from issues submitted by Sept. 1, 2011.

For example, in April the IRS and the Treasury Department published guidance under the IRS’s Industry Issue Resolution (IIR) program for several significant issues affecting the telecommunications and retail industries.

These telecommunication issues included the proper treatment of unit of property for network assets, and the appropriate asset class for wireless telecommunications assets.

Since its inception in 2000, the IIR program has resulted in resolution of many different tax issues cumulatively affecting thousands of taxpayers in many different lines of business. For each issue selected, a multi-functional team gathers and analyzes the relevant facts and recommends guidance.

At any time, business associations and taxpayers may submit tax issues that they believe could be resolved through the IIR program. IIR project selection criteria and submission procedures are outlined in Revenue Procedure 2003-36, which is available on the IRS website, While issues may be submitted for consideration for inclusion in the IIR program at anytime, submissions must be received by Aug. 31 for the summer screening of submissions.

Below is detailed information regarding the issues accepted during the latest review of IIR submissions.



Issue Description

Submitted by

Transmission and Distribution Network Assets in the Utilities Industry (Unit of Property)

Edison Electric Institute

Repair vs Capitalization in the Cable Industry (Unit of Property)


Power Generation Assets in the Utilities Industry (Unit of Property)

Edison Electric Institute

The conclusive presumption of worthlessness under Reg. 1.166-2(d) to partial worthlessness deductions consistent with insurance companies’ statutory book charge-offs of debt

Scribner, Hall & Thompson

Tax Accounting Issues Important to Life Insurance Companies Issuing Variable Annuities

Ernst & Young LLP; Scibner,Hall & Thompson, LLP; and PricewaterhouseCoopers

Repair vs Capitalization in the Natural Gas Industry (Unit of Property)

The American Gas Association and the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America




Issue Description

Submitted by

Safe-Harbor per-mile per diem

American Trucking Associations

Application of IRC 1031(f) to Like Kind Exchange Programs in the Equipment Rental


Taxation of Foreign-Flagged Vessels Operating on the United States Outer Continental

Offshore Marine Service Association

Use of Cost Recovery Method of Accounting by the Charged-Off Debt Purchasing Industry

Akerman Senterfitt

An exception to the accountable plan requirements of Regulations section 1.62-2(c )(4)

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, LLP

Applicability of Section 199 to the Scrap Metal Industry


TIN Masking on Forms 1099 and 5498

Investment Company Institute

The Taxability of the Sale of State Income Tax Credits

Dalby, Wendland & Co., P.C.

Increased Reporting of Consumer Payments Made to Self-Employed Home-Care

Hollrah Leyden LLC

Order of withholding for tipped employees in the restaurant industry

Miller & Chevalier

Section 4261 Applicability to Fractional Interest in Aircraft

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP