Congress is now putting together a plan to close the tax gap and clamp down on the many fraudulent returns being filed by taxpayers. The Senate Finance Committee meeting hearing “Filing Your Taxes: An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure” is focusing on the filing of fraudulent returns similar to the ones filed by many Jackson Hewitt franchises in the past years. Oddly enough the IRS and the Senate are at war with who to blame. Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) feels that the IRS is not doing their job and the IRS Commissioner Mark Everson feels that there needs to be more funds allocated to the IRS for enforcement.
The ultimate goal of the Senate is to introduce another bill similar to S. 832 filed last year which would make tax preparers required to take an exam to prove they are competent in preparing tax returns and that they are also registered with an independent administrative entity. It appears that changes to the tax and accounting industry are coming soon. This will benefit everyone as a whole in the long run. Be sure that your tax returns are prepared by a professional and you can lower your risk of a fraudulent return being filed on your behalf.
Brian N. Stovall