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We Want You to Know:
Coronavirus Tax Relief
IRS has a special webpage dedicated to Coronavirus Tax Relief. Information is updated regularly. Please visit and bookmark https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus-tax-relief-and-economic-impact-payments to stay current on the latest guidance for Coronavirus Tax Relief. You can also input “coronavirus” in the search bar on the IRS webpage.
New landing page on IRS.gov. Keep up to date with Coronavirus tax relief and current status of IRS operations by regularly visiting the People First Initiative webpage. The IRS Operations During COVID-19: Mission-critical functions continue link on this page is very useful to stay updated with IRS operations. Finally, here’s a short You Tube video on the People First Initiative:
Many businesses affected by COVID-19 may qualify for three employer credits; Employee Retention Credit, Paid Sick and Family leave credit. See: Employee Retention Credit FAQ's and Tax Credits for required paid leave-faqs.
The EIP FAQ’s page is updated frequently and will answer most questions.
Economic Impact Payment – Homeless, Underserved.
Virtual Nationwide Tax Forum
Tax professionals can earn up to 30 CPE credits this summer at the virtual IRS Nationwide Tax Forums. https://www.irs.gov/tax-professionals/irs-nationwide-tax-forum-information
IRS announces Form 1040-X electronic filing options coming this summer; major milestone reached for electronic returns. https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-announces-form-1040-x-electronic-filing-options-coming-this-summer-major-milestone-reached-for-electronic-returns
PREVIOUS ISSUES FOLLOWUP:
Issue: When will PPS open?
Response: The Practitioner Priority Service line is open with limited service due to continued staffing limitations. The IRS is processing some Centralized Authorization File (CAF) requests on a limited basis. Only the CAF unit at Ogden is operational at this time.
IRS.gov remains the first option for answers to questions. Practitioners with e-Services accounts and with client authorization can access the Transcript Delivery System to obtain prior-year transcripts. Taxpayers should use Where’s My Refund? and Get Transcript Online, both common requests. However, the Get Transcript by Mail option should not be used since the offices that print and mail the transcripts are closed.
Issue: When will the CAF unit open?
Response: The IRS is processing some Centralized Authorization File (CAF) requests on a limited basis. Only the CAF unit at Ogden is operational at this time.
Issue: Practitioner received an email requesting the practitioner take part in an Invitation to Participate in IRS Enrolled Agents Job Analysis Survey, Prometric survey. The practitioner wanted to check if this was a valid survey and not a phishing attempt. The survey link on IRS.gov did not list this survey.
Response: The survey is valid. On May 20th, RPO emailed a message to enrolled agents informing them that they would receive the survey. SL has elevated the issue to request that all surveys be posted to IRS survey page: https://www.irs.gov/privacy-disclosure/customer-satisfaction-surveys
Issue: A pen and ink error was made on a check. Example, $50,000 instead of $5,000 was written. The check was immediately replaced. A dishonored check penalty was applied. Practitioner was wondering if there was a number to call versus filing for a 1st time penalty abatement. Practitioner called PPS and they were unable to assist.
Response: Per IRC Section 6657, a penalty shall be imposed if any tax is paid with a bad check. The penalty varies according to the amount of the bad check: https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc206
Waiting on refund
Issue: Practitioners stated that taxpayers have not received refunds from returns that were rejected for efile and mailed in as a paper return. When calling Where’s my refund? number they get the message: Your Return is Still Being Processed. Several people mailed their returns in late February and early March because they were rejected, and the situation couldn’t be corrected prior to April 15. The primary reasons were dependents and no IPPIN due to it being lost.
Response: The IRS selects some returns to determine if income, expenses, and credits are being reported accurately. It is recommended to review the returns and all income information statements (e.g., Form W-2) to ensure all income and withholding matches the information reported on the return. If you determine an error was made, file an amended return. Due to campus closures notifications have not been mailed.
Taxpayers have the right to receive assistance from the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) if experiencing economic harm or are seeking help in resolving tax problems that have not been resolved through normal channels. Currently, TAS remains open to receive phone calls at the local phone numbers but has suspended walk-in services in their offices and their toll-free centralized number is unavailable until further notice. Please visit https://www.irs.gov/taxpayer-advocate to locate your local office phone number. https://taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/get-help/held-or-stopped-refunds
Issue: Taxpayer did not receive $500 for their 16-year-old dependent. Practitioner is concerned about realizing the $500 amount on the 2020 tax year because the dependent will be 17 and would be not be considered a qualifying child.
FAQ 32: The IRS is not able to correct or issue additional payments at this time and will provide further details on IRS.gov on the action people may need to take in the future. If you did not receive the full amount to which you believe you are entitled, you will be able to claim the additional amount when you file your 2020 tax return. This is particularly important for individuals who may be entitled to the additional $500 per qualifying child payments. For full response, please review FAQ 32 in the Economic Impact Payment Information Center.
Two EIP checks to previous owner
Issue: Taxpayer moved to a new residence one year ago. She received 2 EIP checks for another person at her address. TP wrote return to sender on the checks; however, the post office redelivered the checks to her address.
Response: The previous owners may not have updated their address with IRS. Changes of address through the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) may not update your address of record on file with the IRS. Taxpayers should directly notify IRS of an address change. Report address changes to IRS by form 8822, a written statement, phone (must pass authentication), face to face or POA.
Returned IRS correspondence
Issue: If a CPA replied under a POA to the Memphis Service Center to a letter asking for a copy of a taxpayer’s tax return and the envelope was returned by the US Post Office to the CPA unopened, how does the IRS want practitioners to handle this?
IRS Operations During COVID-19: Mission-critical functions continue Taxpayer Correspondence: While the IRS is receiving and storing mail, our mail processing functions have been scaled back to comply with social distancing recommendations. This includes the IRS’s ability to correspond with taxpayers about a variety of issues including requests for information needed to process a tax return. Currently, we have reduced responses to paper correspondence. Our primary concern is serving taxpayers as indicated in the People First Initiative, which includes numerous actions to alleviate taxpayer burden during this time.
Taxpayers who mail correspondence to the IRS during this period should expect to wait longer than usual for a response. Once normal operations resume it will take the IRS time to work through any correspondence backlog. Correspondence sent to IRS offices may be returned to the taxpayer if that office is closed and no one is available to accept them.
Practitioner can determine if they want to re-mail the correspondence or wait until official notification of Memphis Campus reopening.
Issue: Taxpayer utilized the "Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here" EIP application to receive their EIP check. Taxpayer later attempted to efile a 2019 tax return and it rejected. Practitioner wants to know if they should paper file a 2019 tax return or a 1040X?
Response: If a taxpayer used the "Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here" tool in error and needs to file a 2019 return, they are advised to file an amended return.
Lost EIP card
Issue: Taxpayer cut up prepaid card and threw the card away.
FAQ. 51 Individuals who have lost or destroyed their EIP Card may request a free replacement through MetaBank® Customer Service. The standard fee of $7.50 will be waived for the first reissuance of any EIP Card. Any initial reissuance fee charged to a customer from an earlier date will be reversed. Individuals do not need to know their card number to request a replacement. Individuals may request a replacement by phone at 800-240-8100 (option 2 from main menu).
The Economic Impact Payment Card is sponsored by the Treasury Department’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service, managed by Money Network Financial, LLC and issued by Treasury’s financial agent, MetaBank®, N.A. If you receive an Economic Impact Payment Card, it will arrive in a plain envelope from “Money Network Cardholder Services.” The Visa name will appear on the front of the Card; the back of the Card has the name of the issuing bank, MetaBank®, N.A. Information included with the Card will explain that the card is your Economic Impact Payment Card. Please go to EIPcard.com for more information and additional FAQs.
Cost of NTF online event:
Issue: Practitioners want to know why the cost is the same or more for the National Tax Forums since they are now online and not held at various hotel locations?
Response: The IRS Nationwide Tax Forums go virtual in 2020 with a series of live-streamed webinars beginning this July. Registration information, as well as information on transfers and cancellations, is available at www.irstaxforum.com. To view FAQs for the 2020 Virtual IRS Nationwide Tax Forum, click here. Question will be elevated for response.