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H.R. 1957: Taxpayer First Act of 2019

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Apr 9, 2019.


Taxpayer First Act of 2019

This bill modifies requirements for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regarding its organizational structure, customer service, enforcement procedures, management of information technology, and use of electronic systems.

The bill includes provisions that

establish the IRS Independent Office of Appeals to resolve federal tax controversies without litigation; require the IRS to develop a comprehensive customer service strategy; continue the IRS Free File Program; exempt certain low-income taxpayers from payments required to submit an offer-in-compromise; modify tax enforcement procedures that address issues such as the seizure of property, issuing a summons, joint liability, referral for private debt collection, and contacting third parties; establish requirements for responding to Taxpayer Advocate Directives; permanently authorize the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Matching Grant Program; modify procedures for whistle-blowers; establish requirements for cybersecurity and identify protection; prohibit the rehiring of certain IRS employees who were removed for misconduct; allow the IRS to require additional taxpayers to file returns electronically; and increase the penalty for failing to file a return. The bill requires the IRS Commissioner to appoint a Chief Information Officer, modifies the requirements for managing information technology, and authorizes streamlined critical pay authority for certain IRS information technology positions.

The bill also requires the IRS to implement

an Internet platform for Form 1099 filings, a fully automated program for disclosing taxpayer information for third-party income verification using the Internet, and uniform standards and procedures for the acceptance of electronic signatures.