You'd think tax refunds for early filers would have arrived by now. After all, it's been more than three months now since the IRS opened up the 2013 income tax filing season.
We've naturally been paying close attention to the story of how federal budget cuts will affect the IRS. When we last wrote about it, on March 4, the word was that the IRS intended to delay furloughs of employees until after the April 15 income tax filing deadline. Furloughs are essentially mandatory, unpaid vacation days that are used to implement cuts in agency budgets.
The problem of tax-return fraud involving identity theft is so large that there are many different aspects to it. Last week, we wrote about the issue of how the IRS is responding to the challenge of processing returns without undue delays.
Identity theft that leads to tax refund fraud has been a significant problem for quite some time. The IRS says it is working on the issue. In our December 3 post we wrote about the agency's intention to use new software filters to do a better job at flagging fraudulent tax returns that are the product of identity theft.
Many people like to file their taxpayers early. The motivation may be to get a tax refund sooner. It may be simply be to get taxes taken care. It could be both.
In a complex federal system, determining how much taxpayers owe to each taxing authority requires not only careful calculation. It also requires proper application of the law.
The deadline to file taxes is now less than two months away. This may be a source of anxiety and hand-wringing for some Orange County residents, who dislike gathering the necessary documentation and worry about the possibility of an audit. Others may look forward to filing their returns because they eagerly expect a plump refund check. The IRS, however, has issued a cautionary message to people in both groups.
While many people dread the approach of the April 15 deadline for filing their tax returns, many California residents also eagerly anticipate the reward: a federal tax refund. But for taxpayers completing a repayment plan under Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code, the refund has been taken away in one judicial district in Michigan.