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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
10/10/1974--Introduced. States that income tax returns and return information shall be confidential. Defines returns and return information for purposes of this Act. Permits the inspection of returns and return information by individuals filing such returns by State tax officials, corporation officials, trustees, estate administrators, and by the House Ways and Means Committee, the Senate Finance Committee, and the Joint Committee on Internal Revenue Taxation upon request and in closed session. Permits the inspection by other committees if authorized by resolution. Allows the inspection of returns and return information by the President or his designees upon his order, and by Justice Department attorneys, without request, for use in relevant proceedings under the tax laws. Allows such inspection, under specified conditions, by the Commerce Department for statistical purposes and by other executive officials for administrative or judicial proceedings other than under the tax laws. Conditions the foregoing inspections upon whether: (1) the taxpayer is a party to the proceedings; (2) the taxpayer consents; or (3) such return information has or may have a bearing on the outcome of such proceedings. Allows qualified inspection of return information by authorized executive officials for purposes of assessing persons being considered for appointments. Authorizes the disclosure of return information to the Attorney General when such information indicates possible criminal violations. Sets forth procedures for disclosure and inspection of return information, including maintenance of a record of who inspects such returns. Establishes penalties for unauthorized disclosure of return information.