According to the FY2018 Lapsed Appropriations Contingency Plan (During the Filing Season):
“…the IRS will need to continue return processing activities to the extent necessary to protect Government property, which includes tax revenue, and maintain the integrity of the federal tax collection process, along with certain other activities authorized under the Anti-Deficiency Act.”
This means the opening of tax season on Monday, Jan. 29, should continue as planned.
The document lays out a series of activities that will continue to be conducted on a limited or intermittent basis, those of which directly affect you and your clients include:
- Completion and testing of the upcoming Filing Year programs
- Electronic returns that are processed systemically (requiring no intervention by service center functions) up to the point of refunds
- Processing paper tax returns through batching
- Processing remittances including payment perfection
- Processing disaster relief transcripts
The following activities will be furloughed and will NOT be conducted:
- Service center processing after the point of batching (i.e. processing paper tax returns)
- Issuing refunds
- Processing non-disaster relief transcripts, income verification express service/return and income verification services
- Processing 1040X amended returns
- All audit functions, examination of returns and processing of non-electronic tax returns that do not include remittances
- Non-automated collections
- Legal counsel
- Taxpayer services such as responding to taxpayer questions (call sites)
If the shutdown extends beyond five business days, these activities will be reassessed and possibly reinstated.
Remember, the prevailing tax law remains in effect and all taxpayers should continue to meet their tax obligations as normal.