Saturday, October 3, 2015

IRS Makes FOIA Disclosures to Tax Analysts Regarding OVDP and Streamlined Processing (10/3/15)

Tax Notes today has an article summarizing some comments about documents it received about OVDP (including its OVDI predecessor).  The article is Andrew Velarde, FOIA Response Shows Hints of IRS Thinking on OVDP, TNT 192-1 (10/5/15) [no link available].  The article will also be published in 149 Tax Notes 7 (Oct. 5, 2015).  The article provides certain highlights of the FOIA disclosures and links to the disclosures.  I list the indicated FOIA disclosures at the end of this blog entry.  Subscribers to Tax Notes might want to review the article and the FOIA disclosures.

The FOIA disclosures are internal IRS "job aids" for examiners and others implementing OVDP.  Much of the information was already public or known to practitioners.

There is some discussion of willfulness but nothing that adds to a practitioner's known analysis of the issue.

One point that was already known to practitioners is that rejection of the transition streamlined relief inside OVDP is not a determination of willfulness so that, upon opt out, the willfulness penalty is pre-determined.  Rather, it is simply a statement that, on the submission the taxpayer made in support of streamline transition relief, the IRS is unable to determine nonwillfulness.  The key is that the taxpayer should make a detailed submission in his transition relief narrative supporting his general claim that his tax and FBAR noncompliance was nonwillful.

Now, as to taxpayers making the streamlined submissions (either SFOP or SDOP) outside OVDP, it is noted that the nonwillful certification and narrative are not necessarily given the review that is required for streamlined transition inside OVDP.  The practitioners seem to be inferring that only a portion of the straight streamlined certifications will be audited.  Of course, if that is true, there is no public guidance as to which are selected for audit.  I think all of this was known already to practitioners, so that the FOIA disclosures confirm what they had already inferred.

There is also some helpful guidance offers in compromise, installment agreements and similar issues.

FOIA DISCLOSURES [No Links Available].
Job aid on miscellaneous offshore penalty refunds 2015 TNT 192-63: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on streamlined program transition rules for current OVDP taxpayers living abroad 2015 TNT 192-64: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on calculating the miscellaneous offshore penalty 2015 TNT 192-66: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on calculating the streamlined domestic offshore penalty 2015 TNT 192-67: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on refunds of advance payments for "barred" years 2015 TNT 192-68: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on issues to consider when determining nonwillfulness 2015 TNT 192-69: Other IRS Documents
Job aid outlining options available for U.S. taxpayers with undisclosed foreign financial assets 2015 TNT 192-71: Other IRS Documents
Job aid providing talking points for revenue agents on the OVDP and streamlined compliance program 2015 TNT 192-72: Other IRS Documents
Job aids on IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service's systemic advocacy management system 2015 TNT 192-52: Other IRS Documents
Job aid for IRS field insolvency function 2015 TNT 192-53: Other IRS Documents
Job aids on collection due process hearing requests 2015 TNT 192-54: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on reasonable cause for failure to file foreign corporation information returns 2015 TNT 192-55: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on time reporting for collection employees' international travel 2015 TNT 192-56: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on IRS field collections 2015 TNT 192-59: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on IRS field and office examinations 2015 TNT 192-57: Other IRS Documents
Job aid on offers in compromise 2015 TNT 192-58: Other IRS Documents

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