The IRS Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee presented its 2014 Annual Report to Congress during a public meeting Tuesday, with recommendations including the creation of an online IRS account for individual and business taxpayers and tax professionals.
The report said that such an account would increase voluntary tax compliance, decrease taxpayer burden, lower IRS customer service costs, and encourage electronic filing.
The ETAAC said that in its next strategic plan, the IRS should commit to creating a single, comprehensive online service account for tax professionals to assist their clients. To encourage broad adoption, the IRS should develop a registration process that allows both Circular 230 practitioners and unenrolled tax preparers access to online service account features.
It also recommended that in its next strategic plan, the IRS should commit to creating a single, comprehensive online account for both individual and business taxpayers to provide them with broad capabilities to obtain tax and account information, manage their tax accounts, and interact with the IRS on account-related and compliance issues. To encourage broad taxpayer adoption, the IRS should also allow taxpayers to create their secure online account when preparing their tax returns using tax preparation software, the report recommended.
As part of its development efforts for online IRS accounts, the IRS should also include the ability for taxpayers and tax professionals to execute and file authorizations electronically so that tax professionals can immediately represent their clients and/or receive information on behalf of their clients, said the report.
Other recommendations in the report include removing the barriers for e-filing employment tax series Form 94x, as well as increasing the efficiency and accuracy of the FATCA registration portal for foreign financial institutions. The report also recommended that the IRS provide one IRS-issued Personal Identification Number as the authentication component of an electronic signature.
The IRS should also increase the accuracy and reduce the burden in reporting the advance payments of the premium tax credit under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the ETAAC report suggested.
The 11-member committee provides an organized public forum for discussion of electronic tax administration issues and the overriding goal that paperless filing should be the preferred and most-convenient method of filing tax and information returns.
“ETAAC commends the IRS on another successful filing season and recognizes the IRS's continued efforts to achieve an 80 percent electronic tax return filing beyond individual returns,” said ETAAC chair Cyrus Daftary in a statement. “As the IRS manages the various electronic administrative initiatives, ETAAC recommends the IRS continue its effort on the successful implementation of the Affordable Care Act and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act,”
ETAAC submits an annual progress report to Congress each June. The IRS created the ETAAC in 1998 as required by the IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998. The report is the result of research and analysis along with meetings with senior IRS executives.
“The IRS appreciates that the committee worked a compressed schedule to deliver a timely report,” said IRS director of e-File services Robert J. Bedoya in a statement. “We welcome your industry expertise and thoughtful recommendations for consolidating PINs, creating online accounts and improving e-filing of the 94x. We will take these recommendations under advisement,”
Public comments on the report may be sent to email@example.com.