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GAO Faults IRS for Poor Information Referral Systems

By:
Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Mar 28, 2016
irs-small-3When someone tips off the IRS on suspected tax noncompliance, the information is routed to the appropriate service unit. However, a recent report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) said that the referral system lacks clear leadership that could maximize efforts to reduce the tax gap. 

"Specifically, we found limitations in oversight structure, documentation of procedures, and monitoring results. These control deficiencies increase the risk that handling of information referrals could fall short of the IRS mission, resulting in inconsistent and inequitable treatment of noncompliance leads submitted by the public," said the report. 

The GAO recommended that the IRS establish an organizational structure responsible for defining objectives and measuring results for information referrals. It also said the IRS needs to document procedures for the information referral process and establish coordination mechanisms across the IRS referrals programs, of which there are eight. 

The IRS agreed with the recommendations.