Tax Professionals Provide Input For IRS Future State
At the end of 2016, as part of a concerted, continuous effort to gather feedback from the tax community and partner groups, the Internal Revenue Service announced that tax professionals attending the Nationwide Tax Forums provided valuable guidance to Future State efforts to improve taxpayer service by highlighting a number of areas of concern.
The 2016 tax forums held by the IRS in five cities held during July, August and September were attended by more than 10,700 tax professionals. IRS Tax Forums are three-day events that are intended to provide tax professionals with the most current information on federal and state tax issues. This information is presented by experts from the IRS and partner organizations through training seminars and workshops.
“This year’s Tax Forums were an excellent opportunity to discuss the IRS Future State with tax professionals and get their perspectives,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “Our Future State work continues to evolve, and this type of feedback is important to help us with this ongoing effort.”
With the purpose of improving the ability of the IRS to fulfill its mission, the IRS is in the process of developing a “Future State” plan that contemplates the taxpayer experience in future years, focusing on the next five years. The IRS wants to enhance and expand services for all taxpayers, and make interactions with the IRS quicker and easier for taxpayers and tax professionals.
The Future State does not contemplate replacing current methods of customer service, such as phone assistance but seeks to find alternative methods for people to receive the services that meet their specific needs. Thus, to achieve this end, a central component of the plan is the creation of online taxpayer accounts as a new option for which taxpayers will be able to obtain information from and interact with the IRS.
In a survey, more than 1,300 tax professionals responded to the question the IRS asked about what changes in the Future State could have the biggest impact on the experience taxpayers have with the IRS. More than 30 percent of respondents cited enhanced support and tools for taxpayers and overall more than 20 percent cited agile, efficient and effective operations.
Another question asked tax professionals how they saw the Future State affecting their work. Nearly half of more than 600 tax professionals responded that they believed the Future State would expand their role as a service partner. A tax professional may assist any taxpayer in any tax-related situation and may especially offer guidance and assistance when a taxpayer must directly deal with the IRS.
The IRS will be utilizing the survey results and other feedback for ongoing work as well preparation for next year’s Tax Forums. The IRS continues to solicit input from partner groups about Future State efforts to help ensure the future direction of IRS changes reflects the needs of taxpayers and the overall tax community.
It is wise for individual and business taxpayers located in New York, New Jersey, or Connecticut to consult with a tax professional to answer any tax-related questions during 2017, call THE TAX EXPERTS at the Thorgood Law Firm www.thorgoodlaw.com. For a FREE consultation call 212-490-0704.