There's a new area of controversy at the Internal Revenue Service, and it surrounds the recently released 2005 annual report from the Taxpayer Advocate Service -the independent organization within the IRS designated as the liaison between the IRS and taxpayers with problems.While the Taxpayer Advocate is required to identify at least 20 serious problems in her annual report, particular attention has been given to one topic in this year's report: the IRS's Criminal Investigation Questionable Refund Program.

The point of the QRP is to identify potentially fraudulent tax returns and intercept the refunds claimed on those returns before they get sent to the taxpayers. The criminal investigation division at the IRS uses a computer program to cull out the tax returns that meet certain characteristics, then the refunds from those returns are frozen while an investigation ensues.

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