The House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee held a hearing Wednesday on “protecting small businesses from IRS abuse,” a day after the House Judiciary Committee held a misconduct hearing in an effort to oust IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.
Wednesday’s hearing followed up on a hearing in February 2015 on the IRS’s use of civil asset forfeiture to seize money from small businesses accused of money laundering. Some businesses made deposits of just under $10,000 to avoid complicated bank-reporting requirements, but were then accused of “structuring” transactions and had their funds seized by the IRS. The IRS changed its policies in October 2014 to stop such forfeitures in the future, but many business owners have fought to get back the funds that were seized (see Lawmakers Urge IRS to Return Seized Assets to Maryland Farm Couple). At Wednesday’s hearing, lawmakers pressed IRS officials to explain why some small businesses are still waiting to get their money back.
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