Filing season complications loom, IRS commissioner tells AICPA
 

Filing season complications loom, IRS commissioner tells AICPA

The 2015 tax filing season “will be one of the most complicated filing seasons we’ve ever had,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said in a keynote address Tuesday to hundreds of attendees at the AICPA National Tax Conference in Washington. He also held out hope of penalty relief for taxpayers affected by the IRS’s shutdown of its e-services over the Columbus Day weekend.

Two new provisions for tax year 2014 introduced by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA), P.L. 111-148, will figure prominently on many individual returns, Koskinen noted: the premium tax credit and the individual shared-responsibility payment, or “individual mandate” to maintain minimum essential health coverage. He said the IRS has so far attempted to ensure affected taxpayers get the word via a new webpage at irs.gov, plain-language tax tips in fliers and other publications, social media and YouTube, and organizations serving taxpayers.

Inaction or late action by Congress on legislation to extend temporary tax provisions—most of which expired at the end of 2013—could not only complicate filing season but delay its start, Koskinen said, repeating his other recent warnings, including to Congress directly. He thanked the AICPA for also writing to Congress to urge immediate action on the expired provisions.

“The continuing uncertainty about the extender legislation imposes stress not only on the IRS but the entire tax community, including everyone in this room,” he said. Read more on the Journal of Accountancy.