How IRS Budget Cuts Impact You
Posted by: Brookside Admin
For early birds who have already prepared their taxes, the IRS officially began processing them and accepting electronically filed returns on January 20th. For the rest of us, prepare to hurry up and wait. Thanks to congressionally mandated budget cuts, the IRS doesn't have the staff to handle incoming calls, and efficiently process returns. Filing electronically remains the fastest way to get a refund, but if you require assistance on your taxes, you're better off hiring a professional. Instead of waiting through the long hold times associated with calls to the IRS, call us for fast, professional service. NPR's Brian Naylor published an article detailing more effects of the budget cuts to the IRS.
- Helpline Delays
Millions of taxpayers call the IRS directly when they have a question about their taxes. In fact, the IRS expects to receive 100-million calls this year alone from troubled taxpayers. The agency estimates that it will only be able to answer about half of those calls, however, due to a lack of staff. Even if you do get through to an actual human being, you'll have to wait about half and hour on hold on average to do so. If you have a pressing question, your choice is to call the IRS multiple times and spend your day on hold, or call us for prompt service.
- More Returns Than Ever
Each year, there are more tax returns filed with the IRS than the year before. Meanwhile, funding to the agency has been on a downward trend. Factoring in inflation, since 2010 the IRS has experienced a 17.5-percent decrease in its budget. More than 150-million returns were sent in last year, which will be eclipsed by a barrage of individual and business returns this year. To complicate matters further, this year's returns will be more complex thanks in part to the Affordable Care Act. This means taxpayers will have more questions and auditers will need to take more time on each return. That results in it taking longer for you to get your refund.
- Fewer Audits
As a taxpayer, fewer audits sounds like a good thing. No one wants to be put through the pain and scrutiny of a tax audit. However, fewer audits means an estimated $2-billion dollars less collected for the Treasury, which typically results in higher taxes in subsequent years. When others skirt their tax bills, the rest of us tend to pay the difference. And, the lack of staff still doesn't mean you can get away with paying less this year. While there may be fewer audits, there are still enough to make cheating on your taxes not worth the risk.
Hiring Brown Kinion and Company to prepare your taxes means they are done correctly and quickly, which means you'll get the refund you deserve faster. Call us to avoid a stressful tax season.