IR 2019-1, 1/7/2019
IRS has announced that, despite the government shutdown, it will process tax returns beginning Jan. 28, 2019 and provide refunds to taxpayers as scheduled.
Congress directed the payment of all tax refunds through a permanent, indefinite appropriation (31 USC 1324), and IRS believes that it has authority to pay refunds despite a lapse in annual appropriations. Although in 2011 the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) directed IRS not to pay refunds during a lapse, OMB has reviewed the relevant law at Treasury’s request and concluded that IRS may pay tax refunds during a lapse.
IRS announced that it will be recalling a significant portion of its workforce, currently furloughed as part of the government shutdown, to work. Additional details for the IRS filing season will be included in an updated FY2019 Lapsed Appropriations Contingency Plan to be released publicly in the coming days.
IRS will begin accepting and processing individual tax returns once the filing season begins. Taxpayers who have all of the needed documentation need not wait to file. They should file when they are ready to submit a complete and accurate tax return.
IRS says that software companies and tax professionals will be accepting and preparing tax returns before Jan. 28 and then will submit the returns when the IRS systems open later this month.