As the 2015 tax filing season dawns upon us, much of the news is not good. The federal government has introduced two programs that will cause consternation for many as they file their taxes in the coming months. These programs have been administered by the IRS and will act as a severe drain on existing IRS resources.
The ACA Affordable Care Act, more controversially known as “Obamacare” and the FATCA Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act are costly programs for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to implement. What the majority of American citizens do not know is that the IRS asked Congress for the financial help they needed with the Affordable Care Act. The IRS submitted a request for $400 million in funding.
How much did the IRS receive? A big, fat goose egg. Not only that, but the budget for the 2015 fiscal year was recently released and the IRS’s funding has been slashed considerably. A whopping $349 million was removed from the IRS’ budget for the 2015 fiscal year. To make matters worse, 2015 is the fifth consecutive year that the IRS experienced a sizable budget cut.
The IRS must come up with the funding for these two new acts without any sort of help from Congress. They have been ordered to shuffle around their existing funds and come up with the money on their own. Some of you may be thinking that this will not affect you in any way.
But that is where you are wrong. While 90 percent of refund checks will still be issued within three weeks to those who file their returns electronically, paper filers are not going to be so lucky. Those who file their returns on paper will be left hanging for at least two months.
Even electronic filers who make errors or require reviews will be made to suffer. The associated delays are much longer than they were in past years. During the 2014 filing season, IRS callers were connected to a person 72 percent of the time. In 2015, this number is expected to dip to 54 percent.
Calls that were taken within 30 minutes before will now take much longer. The IRS was also supposed to receive 200 million in upgrades to their IT department that have fallen through. These upgrades were meant to protect filers from being susceptible to identity theft.
Even the news that seems good has more to it than meets the eye. The IRS is dealing with a hiring freeze that makes it far more difficult for them to audit. On one hand, this is welcome news for certain taxpayers. On the other, the IRS is bracing for the loss of over $$2 billion in tax revenue.
When filing your taxes in 2015, it is best to beware of the new IRS rules and regulations. Otherwise, you could end up filing incorrectly and being forced to wait several months before you receive your tax return. Things are trending downward, creating an atmosphere of apprehension about 2016.Leave a reply →