Tax News Archive:
IRS Modernization Program
After years of crying out against the IRS, the taxpayers are finally getting some relief. With the IRS Reconstructing and Reform Act of 1998, the whole organization structure was overhauled and from that point on began the modernization of the IRS. Over the years, folks believed that the tax-collecting agency had lost its focus and it had increasingly become hostile towards the taxpayers. Since 1952, when the agency started collecting taxes, it had always tried to serve the American people. But with any big government organization, somewhere along the way the part that said, "serve the American people" got lost. But after reading the new IRS mission statement, it looks like things are looking up:
"Provide Americas taxpayers top quality service by helping them understand and meet their tax responsibilities and by applying the tax law with integrity and fairness to all."
The Modernization program was created to not only fix the problems they were having before but to also prepare the IRS for the future. The new IRS wants to be structured around the taxpayers needs, as it is evident from their new mission statement. The new structure will be divided into four operating division instead of one. This way they will be able to address individual needs and issues. The four divisions are:
- Wage & Investment (W&I) The W & I Operating Division will serve approximately 116 million taxpayers, including those who file jointly, with wage and investment income only.
- Small Business/Self-Employed (SB/SE will serve the approximately 45 million small business/self-employed filers who are fully or partially self-employed individuals and small businesses.
- Large & Mid-size Business (LMSB) Will serve corporations with assets greater than $5 million.
- Tax Exempt & Government Entities This operating division will serve three distinct taxpayer segments Employee Plans, Exempt Organizations, and Government Entities.
Other parts of the new IRS that are also of significance to the people are:
- Chief Counsel (Counsel) will provide the correct legal interpretation and represent the IRS with complete impartiality, so that taxpayers will know the law is being applied with integrity and fairness.
- Appeals Will resolve tax controversies without litigation on a basis that is fair and impartial to both the taxpayer and the Government
- Taxpayer Advocate Service The Taxpayer Advocate Service helps taxpayers resolve problems with the IRS and recommend changes to prevent the problems.
- Criminal Investigation Division (CID) CID will serve the American public by investigating potential criminal violations and financial crimes in a manner that will foster confidence in the tax system.
- Communications & Liaison (C&L) C&L will provide IRS employees, legislative, executive, state, business, and professional stakeholders a communications capability that promotes understanding of the IRS mission and goals.
(Source: IRS website, www.irs.gov)