UPDATE: IRS Unveils New People First Initiative

We hope you’re doing well and staying safe during the quarantine measures we’ve been asked to implement. Remember, getting plenty of fresh air, sun, good food, and sleep are crucial to staying healthy. Oh, don’t forget to brush your teeth, floss, and use mouthwash (you’re welcome dentists!). Keeping a clean and healthy mouth is always a good rule of thumb. We also hope you’re still gainfully employed. If not, please know what we’ve been hearing, and reading is there is better news around the corner. As spring approaches, I can’t help but feel lighter, more grateful, and better informed about the virus and our economy. Don’t get me wrong, the dog days are ahead, however, I’m excited to hear more about what we’re all doing as humans to think of ways to salvage our economy, our businesses, and help protect others. I have a good feeling we’ll pull out of this nightmare, we’ll do it together, and emerge stronger as a result.

Today we wanted to highlight what the IRS has done to help individuals and businesses who currently owe the IRS. Link to the IRS website and announcement is below:

IRS unveils new People First Initiative; COVID-19 effort temporarily adjusts, suspends key compliance program

If you owe the IRS, have a payment plan, or have a business with tax liability, we know you’re already in a world of hurt. Add a virus to the mix, and self-quarantining measures, and you have a lot of issues on your hands in trying to run your business or stay afloat. This hasn’t changed. However, as of yesterday, the IRS released measures to deal with the onslaught that this virus has forced us to face. A few highlights taken directly from the IRS website and announcement, with a few additions:

Existing Installment Agreements – For taxpayers under an existing Installment Agreement, payments due between April 1 and July 15, 2020, are suspended. Taxpayers who are currently unable to comply with the terms of an Installment Payment Agreement, including a Direct Deposit Installment Agreement, may suspend payments during this period if they prefer. Furthermore, the IRS will not default any Installment Agreements during this period. By law, interest will continue to accrue on any unpaid balances. We’ve emailed current clients concerning this issue and are continuing to do so for whoever is on a current installment agreement by mail or direct debit. If you’re on a direct debit, please call or email us for details on how this needs plan will be placed on hold.

New Installment Agreements – The IRS reminds people unable to fully pay their federal taxes that they can resolve outstanding liabilities by entering into a monthly payment agreement with the IRS. Installment agreements can still be set up, and they will take time to be implemented. We can go through your financial situation to determine what you qualify for, then pull the trigger when the hold has expired, and we’re on the other side of this nightmare. If you have an employment tax liability, please know Revenue Officers are still pushing to collect, and we can help stop this.

Offers in Compromise (OIC) – The IRS is taking several steps to assist taxpayers in various stages of the OIC process:

Pending OIC applications – The IRS will allow taxpayers until July 15 to provide requested additional information to support a pending OIC. In addition, the IRS will not close any pending OIC request before July 15, 2020, without the taxpayer’s consent.

OIC Payments – Taxpayers have the option of suspending all payments on accepted offers until July 15, 2020

Delinquent Return Filings – The IRS will not default an OIC for those taxpayers who are delinquent in filing their tax return for the tax year 2018. However, taxpayers should file any delinquent 2018 return (and their 2019 return) on or before July 15, 2020.

New OIC Applications – The IRS reminds people facing a liability exceeding their net worth that the OIC process is designed to resolve outstanding tax liabilities by providing a “Fresh Start.”

We are still able to see if you qualify for an offer in compromise. We are conducting financial reviews by telephone to see if our clients qualify for a settlement.

Currently Not-Collectible – The good news is nothing changes if you’ve been placed into currently not collectible. You do not have to remit any payments to the IRS, however, please be sure to file timely (by July 15th) and remit payment if you’re going to owe, as any additional balances will pull the account out of CNC.

Non-Filers – The IRS reminds people who have not filed their return for tax years before 2019 that they should file their delinquent returns. Many should consider contacting a tax professional to consider various available options since the time to receive such refunds is limited by statute. Once delinquent returns have been filed, taxpayers with a tax liability should consider taking the opportunity to resolve any outstanding liabilities by entering into an Installment Agreement or an Offer in Compromise with the IRS to obtain a “Fresh Start.”

Independent Office of Appeals – Appeals employees will continue to work their cases. Although Appeals is not currently holding in-person conferences with taxpayers, conferences may be held over the telephone or by videoconference. Taxpayers are encouraged to promptly respond to any outstanding requests for information for all cases in the Independent Office of Appeals. We’ll continue to receive copies of notices from the IRS concerning appeals calls getting scheduled and notify you of the status of your case as it relates to any appeal we’ve already filed or will file.

As of now, the practitioner lines are down due to the stay at home policy, however, Revenue Officers, Appeals Officers, and Offer Specialists are all set up to work from home. If you or someone you know has been assigned to a Revenue Officer for collection, appeals, or in an offer in compromise, do not hesitate to call us.

We will continue writing and releasing information as it becomes available. Please follow us on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter for the most current information concerning the IRS and the coronavirus.

To schedule a phone, Skype, or Zoom appointment, call us at 720-398-6088.