President Calls for Additional Oversight of Paid Tax Preparers, Specific Plan Forthcoming

Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Feb 14, 2018

The president, in his budget proposal document, has called for additional powers for the IRS to oversee paid tax preparers. 

"Taxpayers are increasingly turning to paid tax return preparers to assist them in meeting their tax filing obligations. Ensuring that these preparers understand the tax code would help taxpayers get higher quality service and prevent unscrupulous tax preparers from exploiting the system and vulnerable taxpayers," said the administration in its budget document. 

The proposal does not go into any specific detail as to what this increased oversight would actually entail, such as how it would be different from the Obama-era program that was eventually struck down by the courts. The above paragraph is the extent to which the matter is discussed in the proposal. However page 140 shows that the administration believes that it will none the less decrease the deficit by $276 million from 2019 to 2028 due to increased tax revenues. 

The budget overall requests $11.1 billion for the IRS, including $2.3 billion for key tax filing and compliance IT applications and $110 million for IT modernization efforts. It also asks for additional funds to make new and continuing investments in enforcement efforts. While, once again, it did not elaborate on what exactly these new investments would be, the administration none the less maintains it would yield a net savings of $29 billion over 10 years. 

The proposal would also give the IRS more authority to correct errors on tax returns before refunds are issued, and to resolve simple issues quickly without having to direct enforcement resources away from more difficult cases. It would also require anyone claiming the Child Tax Credit or Earned Income Tax Credit to have a valid Social Security Number for work. 

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