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The budget deal and the IRS

A budget deal was recently reached regarding the funding of the federal government for the period going up to the end of this September. Among the many provisions in the spending bill are provisions touching on the Internal Revenue Service.

For one, the bill sets the funding level of the IRS. Reportedly, it puts the IRS at around the same funding level it was at in 2016. This comes after a trend of budget cuts to the IRS that the last few years have seen.

The bill also puts some requirements on the IRS. This includes an employee training program requirement. Among the things this requirement mandates the IRS provide its employees with training on are: ethics, impartiality, cross-cultural relations, taxpayer rights and the courteous treatment of taxpayers.

The IRS’s funding and the rules the agency is subject to can have many impacts on the conduct of the agency and its officers and other workers. This, in turn, can have major implications for taxpayers, including those dealing with tax disputes with the IRS. What impacts do you think the IRS’s funding remaining at similar levels to where it was in 2016 will have on the conduct of the IRS? Do you think the employee training program requirement will have any big effects on IRS worker interactions with taxpayers?

When in a tax dispute, how a person responds to the actions and conduct of the IRS and its officers in their case can have considerable implications. So, however the IRS is acting in their case, it can be critical for a taxpayer to have an understanding of what they can do to protect their interests and rights in their interactions with the IRS. Skilled tax lawyers can advise taxpayers on their rights in tax disputes and guide them through dealings with the IRS in such disputes.

Sources: Accounting Today, “Spending deal sets IRS priorities,” Michael Cohn, May 5, 2017

CNBC, “Trump signs spending bill to avert government shutdown,” Jacob Pramuk, May 5, 2017

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