Will the IRS one day be able to answer their phone?

Rumors are leaking out in the tax representation community that the IRS is finally going to do something about answering their phone. They have a pilot program running with the Practitioner Priority Service phone number that requires the caller to repeat a phrase before being placed on hold. The idea here is to ensure that it is an actual person calling rather than some auto-dialer.

I am not holding my breath on this, but this is the first action step they have taken that I have heard.  It is certainly a significant economic waste to have thousands of people on hold for hours at a time.

In other news, the IRS has issued the Inflation Adjusted Numbers for 2023 in Rev.Proc. 2022-38.  Running a few of the numbers on Excel shows a change of 6.9% from 2022.

Finally, there is a potentially big issue coming down the highway. PPP Loans that were improperly forgiven cannot be excluded from income according to the IRS Chief Counsel. How this will work in practice is a question. If the debt is no longer forgiven and must be paid back, it would still not be income.  Presumably, the SBA would make that repayment demand as part of their determination process. The only way this would produce taxable income is that they left the loan forgiven in spite of their determination that the forgiveness was improper. That seems unlikely. Perhaps the plan is to have IRS agents make the determination of improperness as part of their audit process and not bother with foregiveness.

Author: Jim Payne

Jim Payne, a Florida Certified Public Accountant (CPA) since 1976, offers candid insights on getting square with the IRS — with the least pain, and at the lowest cost — with (or without) the help of a tax representative. Mr. Payne is a former IRS agent and expert in business profitability, IRS audits, IRS payroll tax, and IRS non-filer issues. As a Tax Representative, his goal is clear: " I will speak on your behalf to all IRS agents, so you never have to, and I'll guide you in executing a strategy to resolve your IRS problem so you can get back to enjoying life."

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