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IRS Employees Found ‘Harassing or Abusing Taxpayers’

Law imposing restrictions on the way that IRS employees could treat taxpayers was violated…

IRS Employees Found ‘Harassing or Abusing Taxpayers’

(CNS News) The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, which oversees the Internal Revenue Service, reports that in fiscal 2016 the IRS closed four cases in which IRS employees were found to have violated a law governing their behavior toward taxpayers and that these violations included “harassing and abusing taxpayers and using obscene and profane language.”

In 1998, Congress enacted a law imposing restrictions on the way that IRS employees could treat taxpayers.

As explained by the IG, this included a prohibition on an IRS employee contacting a taxpayer at “unusual or inconvenient times,” contacting the taxpayer directly if the taxpayer “has obtained representation from a person authorized to practice before the IRS,” or contacting the taxpayer at the “taxpayers place of employment, if the IRS knows or has reason to know that such communication is prohibited.”

 

Also, the IG said, “the IRS may not harass, oppress, or abuse any person in connection with any tax collection activity.”

This includes, among other things, a prohibition on the “use or threat of violence or harm,” “use of obscene or profane language,” “causing a phone to ring continuously with harassing intent,” and “placing of telephone calls without meaningful disclosure of the caller’s identity…”

The IG report also said the IRS lost track of 14 complaints of IRS employee misconduct that the IG had referred to the federal tax collection agency.

“In addition, during Fiscal Year 2016, the TIGTA Office of Investigations referred 14 complaints to the IRS that were not entered into the IRS tracking system or reviewed to determine if they were violations of the FTCP,” said the report…

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