TIGTA releases spring semiannual report “January 2019 marked the 20th anniversary of TIGTA’s establishment as an independent organization. In July of 1998, Congress approved and the President signed into law the IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998. In January 1999, TIGTA became operational as a newly formed Office of Inspector General, and for 20 years now it has faithfully served the American people by providing fair, effective, and efficient oversight of the IRS and the Nation’s tax administration system. I am confident that TIGTA will continue to successfully carry out its mission in 2019 and beyond.” J. Russell George, Inspector General On June 3, 2019, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) released its spring semiannual report to Congress. The report, covering the period of October 2018, through March 2019, has identified challenges faced by the IRS between October and March and focused their audits in those areas. These management and performance challenges fell into these categories: Security over taxpayer data and protection of IRS resources; Implementing the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and other tax law changes; Identity theft and impersonation fraud; Improving tax reporting and payment compliance; And achieving program efficiencies and cost savings. TIGTA's Spring … Read More
There has been general concern that there would be challenges with the third attempt at utilizing private collection agencies (PCAs), however, it was not suspected it would happen so soon. “It” is apparent disregard by some private debt collectors of the rules established in connection with the collection agencies’ latest congressionally mandated foray into federal tax collection. Private collection agencies are approving installment agreements with delinquent taxpayers beyond what the law provides, according to J. Russell George, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA). Payment plan limits: There is a statutory limit as to how long an Internal Revenue Service installment loan is available, George told Representatives at a May 23 hearing of the House Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee, “and we are finding initially that these debt collectors are not abiding by that.” IGeorge did not provide any additional details to the House panel. But the mere fact that the federal office charged with oversight of the IRS already has concerns about the private tax collectors is seen as, well, concerning. Spotty PCA tax collection history: While George did not offer any details on just how private collection agencies, or PCAs as they typically are referred to … Read More
In a June 8 release from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), TIGTA announced that the IRS significantly reduced the time frames to close taxpayer identity theft cases by centralizing victim assistance into a single organizational directorate and by improving its processes and procedures. TIGTA’s report on their review of 51,749 taxpayer-initiated identity theft refund cases closed by the Identity Theft Victim Assistance (IDTVA) Directorate between August 1, 2015, and May 25, 2016, indicated that cases were closed in an average of 166 days. This finding indicated that cases closed 112 days sooner than the 278 days reported in TIGTA’s previous review in March 2015 (a 40 percent improvement in timeliness closing cases). Not only did timeliness improve because of clearer lines of responsibility in the IDTVA and improved processing guidance, but IRS also reduced the number of identity theft resolution errors (victims receiving incorrect refund amounts) by seven percent. TIGTA noted these findings, but made one recommendation that IDTVA managers should be more consistent when conducting required monthly reviews of employees’ identity theft casework.
Expanded Outreach Effort Announced to Prevent More Losses to IRS Impersonators WASHINGTON — The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) urged taxpayers to remain on “High Alert” and announced additional outreach efforts to prevent them from falling victim to criminals who impersonate Internal Revenue Service and Treasury employees this filing season. “The phone fraud scam has become an epidemic, robbing taxpayers of millions of dollars of their money,” said J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. “We are making progress in our investigation of this scam, resulting in the successful prosecution of some individuals associated with it over the past year,” he said, adding that over the summer, a ringleader was sentenced to more than 14 years in federal prison. “However, this is still a matter of high investigative priority.” TIGTA continues to receive reports of thousands of contacts every month in which individuals fraudulently claiming to be IRS officials make unsolicited calls and “robocalls” to taxpayers and demanding that they send them cash, he said. “As the tax filing season begins, it is critical that all taxpayers continue to be wary of unsolicited telephone calls and e-mails from individuals claiming to be IRS and Treasury … Read More
- Page 1 of 2