What is IRS
IRS or Internal Revenue Service is a US government agency founded by the former President,Abraham Lincoln, in the year 1862. This agency is responsible for enforcement of tax laws as well as collection of taxes from employment services and individuals in the Unites States. Notonly this, but the Internal Revenue Service is also further involved in the lives of American people by managing their various tax credits as well as subsidies offered to the low- and middle- income families. The IRS operates under the authority and guidance of United States Department of the Treasury. It normally handles excise, gifts, estate and corporate taxes apart from mutual funds and dividends. As per the data from last years nearly 90% of the tax return in the United States are filled with the Internal Revenue service every year in order to maintain tax regulations in the country.

Ever since the incorporation of the Internal Revenue Service, it has been fully accountable for collecting revenue required by the federal government. However, the IRS agents as well as the agency itself faced certain criticism over its methods and principles of tax reforms. Nevertheless,the Internal Revenue Service in the year 2021 instead of facing budget cuts and inadequate morale, processed approximately 250 million tax returns. A big cheer goes to the computerization of the IRS system which has increased the number of tax return fillings using e- files. As a result of which the taxpayers received their returns in form of direct deposits to their personal accounts rather than a traditional paper check. As per last year results approx. 90% of the individuals filed income tax returns to IRS electronically which was a great success as compared to previous years.

The primary motive of Internal Revenue Service or IRS is to render best quality services to taxpayers of the country thereby making them understand various obligations related to tax laws and to fulfill the same within the time frame. Such deep knowledge rendered by the Internal Revenue Service agents will help the taxpayers to abide by the rules and fulfill their obligations without defaulting. Additionally, the goal of Internal Revenue Service or IRS is to offer just, conciliatory and fair services to its people. Moreover, the federal agency not only collects tax revenue for the federal government rather it is an entity that is responsible for tax payment deductions following certain rules which if not abide properly may cause stiff consequences.

The Internal Revenue Service department follows Internal revenue code which are statutory laws that helps in regulating taxes. As such there are certain predetermined preliminary functions of Internal Revenue Service:

  • Collecting as well as processing tax returns filed by individuals and businesses,
  • Making sure taxes are paid when they become due,
  • Issuing yearly refunds for overpaid taxes and payment made under certain deductions,
  • Conducts criminal investigations,
  • Guiding every person in a friendly and helpful manner towards certain issues,
  • Prepare retirement plans etc.

How to talk to IRS agent?

If you are speculating about your refund or need help regarding tax laws, you can call the IRS agent but at times it is difficult to reach a real human. In other words, if you received a tax notice and need to speak to an IRS agent about it, call on the phone number mentioned on the notice.

You can call at the IRS customer support number for specific questions related to tax laws and refund related information. However, if you are not able to resolve a tax issue, it is vital to contact the Tax group that will provide you with accurate assistance and fight for your case. Mostly an IRS customer service representative is available from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. throughout the week except on Sundays. Apparently, you can also write a letter to the IRS office in order to resolve your issue, but it will take at least 30 days for responding.

However, people usually want to go directly to a real human in order to get answers on their financial matters instead of checking for online sources for help. In the whole procedure regarding tax issues and getting the refund, the taxpayers need to be patient for resolving their case as well as getting answers to their questions. Since the overall process and line to line procedure of filing unpaid tax takes up a month or more as the IRS representative needs to understand the whole scenario before taking up any method to resolve the same.

Many tax consultant companies render help to customers in getting refund or help with their return without waiting for approx. 25 minutes on hold to catch up with an IRS agent. Mostly every tax consultant firm has a team of affordable experts who can quickly resolve your problem thereby eliminating the stress of your life. In order to talk to an IRS agent, call them to speak directly to tax attorneys, CPA’S, Enrolled IRS agents and former IRS agents who have special knowledge about tax issues.

As per last year, only 11% calls were answered by the customer service representatives at the Internal Revenue Service department against 300 million calls made by the consumers to the IRS. Moreover, calling IRS representative is a daunting task and takes up lot of time and energy of the customers. Thus, it is recommended to be patient and call early in the morning to avoid phone line crowds.

How to get to an IRS agent ?

Irrespective of the coming expenses in a year tax is a bigger part of it. Or one should explain as the tax season is coming upon us again. The Internal Revenue Service as a federal agency market the tax season as a time to “claim your refund” but, for most taxpayers it is a form of debt to be repaid. The tax debt has a drastic impact on every socioeconomic class irrespective of their gender or ethnicity.

As a result of which taxpayers need professional help in resolving tax issues and thus the IRS provides agents which will help in solving tax problems. Nevertheless, reaching IRS agent is a slightly disappointing process. Local IRS taxpayer assistance centers helps in resolving issues in the most appropriate manner by solving account problems, making payment adjustments and resolving stimulus payments. However, reaching a real human at the IRS center is a crucial and time-consuming task. Since the last year the Internal Revenue service has facing tremendous delays in processing returns.

Mostly taxpayers need to contact the IRS customer service representative when the receive an official letter for unfiled taxes in previous year. The notice has a tele-phone number as well as a mailing address which can be used by the taxpayers to contact IRS agents. Previous reports shows that the IRS agents were able to resolve half of the issues as compared to the total files received. If the issue to contact IRS customer representative becomes persistent, the taxpayer should try and contact the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS). It is an independent office in the Internal Revenue Service that work towards protection of the taxpayers without any extra charge.The taxpayer if not received any response from the IRS department or is not able to reach customer representative then they can directly contact the TAS to overcome any financial struggle.

Lastly, in order to overcome such a tragic problem, the Internal Revenue Service department needs to invest in infrastructure where they can employ more customer assistance employs to help resolve issues faster. Additionally, the department should inculcate customer call back facility as it will help in reducing the need for repeat calls. Such a system shall reduce call volumes and render effective help to taxpayers. Hence, the longtime wait issue can effectively be resolved with the callback technology thereby improving the overall system at the Internal Revenue Service department.

How much will the IRS settle for

Every year the Internal Revenue Service department approves numerous offers from taxpayers in respect of their past delay in tax payments. The very purpose of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is to render help by decreasing the tax obligations owed by the taxpayers in exchange for a lump-sum agreement. Many commercials and T.V. ads display as how easy it is to settle tax obligations with IRS in pennies irrespective of the dollars you owe. However, all these commercials are a marketing tool for the Internal Revenue Service department. The IRS
department only accept an offer if a taxpayer fulfill certain obligations which are:

  • A person isn’t able to make full payment either in lump-sum amount or in installments
    within the time frame,
  • There is certain doubt regarding the tax liability owed by the taxpayer,
  • Due to exceptional reasons like financial hardship, unfair economic crises, cannot work due to health issues, or a person is left with no money as to pay the basic living expenses.

As per the figures from last year, the total average offer in compromise which the IRS department accepted was $16176. However, it is a number with little meaning as the major concern is establishing eligibility criteria which the IRS agents set while accepting taxpayers offers. In order to set a criterion, it is crucial to understand the concept of offer in compromise. Intrinsically, an offer in compromise is a tax obligation relief strategy which is designed by the IRS agency in order to decrease the tax liability of individuals and entrepreneurs. If a taxpayer is not able to fulfil his obligation, he/she can try to settle with the IRS for an amount that is less than they owe. Such a partial payment settlement is basically an offer in compromise. Apparently, when all other forms of settlement fail, the offer in compromise program can be used by the taxpayer to settle tax liability for an amount lower then they owe.

What basically happens if the IRS approves a taxpayers offer in compromise? Based on the set criteria if a taxpayer’s application gets selected by the IRS, then he is responsible for paying the outstanding tax and any related penalties and interest in a lump sum amount within a given time frame. The remainder of his obligation will be waived of in this settlement. For instance, if a taxpayer must fulfil an obligation of $80,000 and after negotiating with the IRS his accounts settle for an amount of $35,000, then he/she is not liable to pay rest ($45,000) of the amount. Hence, depending on the set rules and regulations the Internal Revenue Service Department settles for the said amount in favor of the taxpayer if his application got accepted in firsthand.

On the other hand, if a taxpayers application gets rejected after submitting application at the IRS department the federal agency shall provide detailed information about the same. In certain
scenarios, they might ask for further documentation or related information to support the tax obligation. For example, if a taxpayer with a tax obligation reaches out to the IRS for not able to fulfil his obligation due to financial hardship because of unemployment. In such a vase the IRS agent will ask him to submit a letter from his state unemployment agency. In other cases, if an offer is rejected then the taxpayer needs to make continuous payment of monthly installments or resolve through submitting the full amount at once.

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Mr. Michael D. Sullivan

Michael D. Sullivan is the founder of MD Sullivan Tax Group. He had a distinguished career with the Internal Revenue Service for 10 years. As a veteran IRS Revenue Officer / Agent, he served as an Offer in Compromise Tax Specialist and Large Dollar Case Specialist.

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