The IRS Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee's 2013 Annual Report to Congress recommends that the IRS work more closely with tax preparers, accountants and others to pursue its goal of improving compliance electronically. 

The annual report suggested that the IR “leverage tax service delivery channels from the private sector through partnerships and collaboration with accounting firms and associations, tax software developers, and tax preparation companies to better understand stakeholder perception and needs for further adoption of and confidence in the use of electronic tax administration to simplify and improve compliance with tax laws and collection.”

It also recommended that -- with consent from the taxpayer -- the service heighten access to information for taxpayers, preparers and other third parties through “real-time” Internet tools to mitigate fraud “and to achieve more accurate and timely returns.”

“With the extreme late legislation in late 2012/early 2013 and the sequester in 2013, IRS continues to face ever-increasing budget and environment challenges as it deals with increased tax complexity, expanded responsibilities, reduced budgets, and increased taxpayer expectations,” the report noted. “IRS needs to continue implementing new and innovative business processes and collaborative engagements with industry and states. Increasing identity theft and fraudulent tax return submissions requires that the IRS more closely review return submissions, which necessitates the IRS find the balance between processing faster refunds with the need to protect taxpayers from fraudulent activity.”

Also among its top five recommendations were that the IRS should:

  • Approve and publish standards for security, privacy and fraud prevention;
  • Continue to pursue its goal of 80 percent e-filing; and,
  • Fund CADE 2 and the 1040 Modernized e-file programs.

In addition to its recommendations, the report noted that the IRS was with seven percentage points of its goal of 80 percent e-filing for all major returns, with 72.81 percent of major returns expected to be e-filed in 2013. Individual returns actually beat the goal, with over 82 percent e-filed.
Public comments on the report may be sent to etaac@irs.gov.