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IRS Advises Employers, Payers, Agents to Use New Form 2678

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The Internal Revenue Service recommends that employers, payers and their agents begin using a new, improved version of the agent-appointment form immediately, to avoid delays in having the IRS approve the agent appointments. All versions prior to the May 2007 form are now obsolete. Form 2678, Employer/Payer Appointment of Agent, authorizes an agent to file tax returns and deposit and pay employment or other withholding taxes on an employer or payer's behalf. However, the employer retains responsibility for filing Form 940, Employer's Annual Federal Unemployment Tax Return, and depositing and paying FUTA tax. The IRS recently redesigned Form 2678 to make it clearer and more user-friendly. The redesign resulted from an initiative led by the IRS Office of Taxpayer Burden Reduction. The IRS will return any obsolete versions of Forms 2678 that are filed and ask senders to submit the May 2007 revision instead. When the IRS approves Form 2678, both the employer or payer and the agent are liable for the employer's employment tax.

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