IRS Appeals Development

IRS Appeals Office Developments and What it Means for You

There may be no better time in recent years for you to go to Appeals to  settle  your tax dispute with the IRS. Appeals is an independent office within the IRS that allows taxpayers an opportunity to resolve their tax case.   

The IRS recently announced its FY 2023 goals and objectives for the Appeals Office. There are several important takeaways for the taxpayer here. 

The passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in 2022 will bring a much needed budget increase to allow the IRS to be more responsive to the taxpayer. In June 2022, IRS personnel returned to the office to resume normal business operations. This includes the essential Account and Processing Support (APS) group that is responsible for processing incoming and outgoing closed cases for Appeals. 

When the pandemic began in March 2020, IRS offices were essentially shut down and the entire workforce became remote. Business operations for case inventory workflow were significantly disrupted. Correspondence from taxpayers went largely unopened for weeks by personnel. 

As a former appeals officer in Los Angeles who  actually saw the disruptions, I would know. 

But now Appeals has reemphasized its operations with taxpayer service and satisfaction in mind. This includes docketed cases referred to Appeals. If you filed a Tax Court petition, you will still have an opportunity to resolve your case in Appeals. Appeals will ensure that incoming docketed cases are fully developed by Compliance (examiner) with a genuine dispute between the taxpayer and IRS. 

Both the Tax Court and the IRS Office of Chief Counsel rely heavily on Appeals to help settle cases. Otherwise, Chief Counsel will need to request a continuance from the court to get more time to work with the taxpayer and resolve the case. 

A further sign of Appeals normalcy is the return of the in person Appeals conference option at the local IRS Appeals Office with an appeals officer or settlement officer. The in-person conference is a great way to present your case as you are sitting at the table with the appeals or settlement officer. During the pandemic,  taxpayers who wanted their case heard in Appeals were limited to a phone or video conference. 

In short, Appeals remains one of best options for taxpayers to resolve their dispute with IRS. The goal of  Appeals is to settle  cases in an appropriate and efficient manner. The majority of cases in Appeals do get resolved which brings closure to the case.  Contact me if you are in the greater Los Angeles area about your tax representation needs  in Appeals or the IRS in general.