Taxes (1 - 10 of 51 items)
Financial Audit: IRS's Fiscal Years 2016 and 2015 Financial Statements
GAO-17-140: Published: Nov 10, 2016. Publicly Released: Nov 10, 2016.
In GAO's opinion, the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) fiscal years 2016 and 2015 financial statements are fairly presented in all material respects. However, in GAO's opinion, IRS did not maintain effective internal control over financial reporting as of September 30, 2016, because of a continuing material weakness in internal control over unpaid assessments. GAO's tests of IRS's compliance with...
Inland Waterways Fuel Tax: Additional Data Could Enhance IRS's Efforts to Ensure Taxpayer Compliance
GAO-16-682: Published: Jul 29, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 29, 2016.
Based on results of audits, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) views vessel operators to be substantially in compliance with requirements to report and pay the Inland Waterways Fuel Tax (fuel tax). IRS seeks to ensure compliance by auditing quarterly excise-tax returns filed by these operators, as well as identifying operators that failed to file (nonfilers).Audits of filed returns: IRS data show...
Identity Theft and Tax Fraud: IRS Needs to Update Its Risk Assessment for the Taxpayer Protection Program
GAO-16-508: Published: May 24, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2016.
Taxpayer Protection Program (TPP). While the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has made efforts to strengthen TPP—a program to authenticate the identities of suspicious tax return filers and prevent identity theft (IDT) refund fraud—fraudsters are still able to pass through and obtain fraudulent refunds. TPP authenticates taxpayers by asking questions only a real taxpayer should know; however, fr...
Management Report: Improvements Are Needed to Enhance the Internal Revenue Service's Internal Control over Financial Reporting
GAO-16-457R: Published: May 18, 2016. Publicly Released: May 18, 2016.
During its audit of the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) fiscal years 2015 and 2014 financial statements, GAO identified several deficiencies in IRS’s internal control over financial reporting that while not considered to be material weaknesses or significant deficiencies either individually or collectively, nonetheless warrant IRS management’s attention. These control deficiencies relate to...
Tax Filing: IRS Needs a Comprehensive Customer Service Strategy and Needs to Better Combat Identity Theft Refund Fraud and Protect Taxpayer Data
GAO-16-578T: Published: Apr 19, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 19, 2016.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) improved phone service to taxpayers during the 2016 filing season compared to last year. According to IRS, this is due in part to the additional $290 million in funding Congress provided to improve customer service, identity theft (IDT) refund fraud, and cybersecurity efforts. However, IRS expects its performance for the entire fiscal year will not reach the leve...
IRS Referral Programs: Opportunities Exist to Strengthen Controls and Increase Coordination across Overlapping Programs
GAO-16-155: Published: Feb 23, 2016. Publicly Released: Mar 24, 2016.
Information referrals from the public alleging tax noncompliance must be submitted on paper forms by mail to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These referrals are manually screened by clerical staff and routed by mail to units across IRS for further action, as shown in the figure.Process for Screening and Routing Information Referrals for Further ReviewIneffective internal controls undercut IRS...
2015 Tax Filing Season: Deteriorating Taxpayer Service Underscores Need for a Comprehensive Strategy and Process Efficiencies
GAO-16-151: Published: Dec 16, 2015. Publicly Released: Jan 14, 2016.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) provided the lowest level of telephone service during fiscal year 2015 compared to prior years, with only 38 percent of callers who wanted to speak with an IRS assistor able to reach one. This lower level of service occurred despite lower demand from callers seeking live assistance, which has fallen by 6 percent since 2010 to about 51 million callers in 2015. Ove...
IRS Whistleblower Program: Billions Collected, but Timeliness and Communication Concerns May Discourage Whistleblowers
GAO-16-20: Published: Oct 29, 2015. Publicly Released: Nov 30, 2015.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Whistleblower Office (WO) is responsible for processing thousands of tax whistleblower claims annually for two related whistleblower programs: for claims of $2 million or less, the 7623(a) program, and for claims over $2 million, the 7623(b) program. The whistleblower claim review process takes several years to complete, and GAO found that the WO is not using ava...
Financial Audit: IRS's Fiscal Years 2015 and 2014 Financial Statements
GAO-16-146: Published: Nov 12, 2015. Publicly Released: Nov 12, 2015.
In GAO's opinion, the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) fiscal years 2015 and 2014 financial statements are fairly presented in all material respects. However, in GAO's opinion, IRS did not maintain effective internal control over financial reporting as of September 30, 2015, because of a continuing material weakness in internal control over unpaid tax assessments. GAO's tests of IRS's compliance w...
Fiscal Outlook: Addressing Improper Payments and the Tax Gap Would Improve the Government's Fiscal Position
GAO-16-92T: Published: Oct 1, 2015. Publicly Released: Oct 1, 2015.
A number of strategies, including implementing preventive controls and addressing GAO's prior recommendations, can help agencies reduce improper payments, which have been a persistent, government-wide issue. The improper payment estimate, attributable to 124 programs across 22 agencies in fiscal year 2014, was $124.7 billion, up from $105.8 billion in fiscal year 2013. The almost $19 billion incre...