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A man responsible for preparing tax returns has been sentenced to serve 12 months in a federal prison after he was convicted of intentionally aiding and assisting in the preparation and presentation of a false income tax return, according to the Department of Justice.
The deadline will be April 17 this year, so taxpayers will have an additional two days to file rather than the traditional April 15 date.
But that does not mean the IRS has a year to get up to speed.
In addition to more funding, Olson also allows that within the agency's current budget, the IRS can do a better job managing it.
"The IRS will have its hands full in implementing the new law", Olson said.
The dismal call-response rate - and other challenges the IRS faces in trying to clear up confusion and administer the new tax law - is due in part to funding cuts that have essentially shrunk the IRS budget by 20% since 2010. "But with more funding, strong leadership, and a closer working relationship with Congress, I am convinced the IRS can do the job well".
Almost 155 million individual tax returns are expected to be filed in 2018. The IRS will have a lot of issues to work through, and taxpayers will have a lot of questions.
Trump has said the new withholding amounts could start in February. "You can't expect the same level of service after losing $900 million and 21,000 full-time employees in seven years".
Olson submitted her annual report to Congress on Wednesday, which highlights the most serious problems facing taxpayers.
The IRS expects the earliest refunds to be available by February 27 if taxpayers choose direct deposit and there are no other issues with the tax return.
The report to Congress also looks at a variety of other tax administration issues, including the IRS's administration of the private debt collection program, the agency's increasing emphasis on online taxpayer accounts, and how it is implementing a recent law that would deny or revoke the passports of taxpayers with significant tax debts.