Appeals Office To Return To In-Person Conferences

IRS Appeals will revert to accommodating taxpayers who want in-person conferences rather than phone conferences, according to Andy Keyso, acting deputy chief at the Internal Revenue Service Office of Appeals.

“Step one is going to be for field cases to turn the decision back over to taxpayers,” Keyso said at the American Bar Association tax section meeting in Austin, Texas. “Do you want an in-person conference? If so, you’ll get it.”  Step two is to include campus cases.  Currently, Appeals is unable to offer in-person conferences for smaller cases that are worked out of the IRS campuses, Keyso said.  Field cases include audits by a field revenue agent or office examiner, while campus cases include correspondence exam cases, according to Keyso.

The IRS has six campuses around the country, according to Keyso. He said there’s a mismatch between where IRS employees are and where they should be, because it’s unlikely that a taxpayer is going to be near one of those campuses.  Keyso also said the campus buildings don’t have conference facilities. “For campus cases, we have some adjustments to make internally before we can do that,” Keyso said, adding that in the long term IRS Appeals has to realign its workforce, “which is difficult to do right now.”

The IRS will issue guidance to employees about the in-person conferences, Keyso said. The guidance will include information on what IRS employees need to be prepared for taxpayers in field cases who want in-person conferences as well as issues with campus cases.

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