2019—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 116–25 added subsec. (d).
1998—Pub. L. 105–206 amended section catchline and text generally, substituting present provisions for provisions which had declared: in subsec. (a), that provisions of Reorganization Plans No. 26 of 1950 and No. 1 of 1952 should apply to all functions vested by this title, or by any act amending this title in any officer, employee, or agency of the Department; and in subsec. (b), that nothing in such Reorganization Plans should be considered to impair existing rights and remedies, that for the purpose of any action to recover tax all statutes, rules, and regulations referring to collector of internal revenue, principal officer for internal revenue district, or Secretary, should be deemed to refer to officer whose acts gave rise to such action, and that venue of any such action should be the same as under existing law.
1976—Pub. L. 94–455 struck out “or his delegate” after “Secretary”.
Effective Date of 2019 Amendment
Pub. L. 116–25, title III, § 3001(b), July 1, 2019, 133 Stat. 1015, provided that:
“The amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall apply with respect to the hiring of employees after the date of the enactment of this Act [July 1, 2019].”
Comprehensive Customer Service Strategy
Pub. L. 116–25, title I, § 1101, July 1, 2019, 133 Stat. 985, provided that:
“(a) In General.—Not later than the date which is 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act [July 1, 2019], the Secretary of the Treasury (or the Secretary’s delegate) shall submit to Congress a written comprehensive customer service strategy for the Internal Revenue Service. Such strategy shall include—
a plan to provide assistance to taxpayers that is secure, designed to meet reasonable taxpayer expectations, and adopts appropriate best practices of customer service provided in the private sector, including online services, telephone call back services, and training of employees providing customer services;
a thorough assessment of the services that the Internal Revenue Service can co-locate with other Federal services or offer as self-service options;
proposals to improve Internal Revenue Service customer service in the short term (the current and following fiscal year), medium term (approximately 3 to 5 fiscal years), and long term (approximately 10 fiscal years);
a plan to update guidance and training materials for customer service employees of the Internal Revenue Service, including the Internal Revenue Manual, to reflect such strategy; and
identified metrics and benchmarks for quantitatively measuring the progress of the Internal Revenue Service in implementing such strategy.
“(b) Updated Guidance and Training Materials.—
Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Treasury (or the Secretary’s delegate) shall make available the updated guidance and training materials described in subsection (a)(4) (including the Internal Revenue Manual). Such updated guidance and training materials (including the Internal Revenue Manual) shall be written in a manner so as to be easily understood by customer service employees of the Internal Revenue Service and shall provide clear instructions.”
Termination of Employment for Misconduct
Pub. L. 105–206, title I, § 1203, July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 720, as amended by Pub. L. 108–357, title VIII, § 881(d), Oct. 22, 2004, 118 Stat. 1627; Pub. L. 114–113, div. Q, title IV, § 407(a), Dec. 18, 2015, 129 Stat. 3120, provided that:
“(a) In General.—
Subject to subsection (c), the Commissioner of Internal Revenue shall terminate the employment of any employee of the Internal Revenue Service if there is a final administrative or judicial determination that such employee committed any act or omission described under subsection (b) in the performance of the employee’s official duties. Such termination shall be a removal for cause on charges of misconduct.
“(b) Acts or Omissions.—The acts or omissions referred to under subsection (a) are—
willful failure to obtain the required approval signatures on documents authorizing the seizure of a taxpayer’s home, personal belongings, or business assets;
providing a false statement under oath with respect to a material matter involving a taxpayer or taxpayer representative;
“(3) with respect to a taxpayer, taxpayer representative, or other employee of the Internal Revenue Service, the violation of—
any right under the Constitution of the United States; or
“(B) any civil right established under—
falsifying or destroying documents to conceal mistakes made by any employee with respect to a matter involving a taxpayer or taxpayer representative;
assault or battery on a taxpayer, taxpayer representative, or other employee of the Internal Revenue Service, but only if there is a criminal conviction, or a final judgment by a court in a civil case, with respect to the assault or battery;
violations of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
, Department of Treasury regulations, or policies of the Internal Revenue Service
(including the Internal Revenue Manual) for the purpose of retaliating against, or harassing, a taxpayer, taxpayer representative, or other employee of the Internal Revenue Service
willful misuse of the provisions of section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
for the purpose of concealing information from a congressional inquiry;
willful failure to file any return of tax required under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
on or before the date prescribed therefor (including any extensions), unless such failure is due to reasonable cause and not to willful neglect;
willful understatement of Federal tax liability, unless such understatement is due to reasonable cause and not to willful neglect; and
performing, delaying, or failing to perform (or threatening to perform, delay, or fail to perform) any official action (including any audit) with respect to a taxpayer for purpose of extracting personal gain or benefit or for a political purpose.
“(c) Determination of Commissioner.—
“(1) In general.—
The Commissioner of Internal Revenue may take a personnel action other than termination for an act or omission under subsection (a).
The exercise of authority under paragraph (1) shall be at the sole discretion of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue and may not be delegated to any other officer. The Commissioner of Internal Revenue, in his sole discretion, may establish a procedure which will be used to determine whether an individual should be referred to the Commissioner of Internal Revenue for a determination by the Commissioner under paragraph (1).
“(3) No appeal.—
Any determination of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue under this subsection may not be appealed in any administrative or judicial proceeding.
For purposes of the provisions described in clauses (i), (ii), and (iv) of subsection (b)(3)(B), references to a program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance or an education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance shall include any program or activity conducted by the Internal Revenue Service for a taxpayer.
“(e) Individuals Performing Services Under a Qualified Tax Collection Contract.—
An individual shall cease to be permitted to perform any services under any qualified tax collection contract (as defined in section 6306(b) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
) if there is a final determination by the Secretary of the Treasury under such contract that such individual committed any act or omission described under subsection (b) in connection with the performance of such services.”
[Pub. L. 114–113, div. Q, title IV, § 407(b), Dec. 18, 2015, 129 Stat. 3120, provided that:
“The amendment made by this section [amending section 1203 of Pub. L. 105–206
, set out above] shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 18, 2015
Employee Training Program
Pub. L. 105–206, title I, § 1205, July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 722, provided that:
“(a) In General.—
Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [July 22, 1998], the Commissioner of Internal Revenue shall implement an employee training program and shall submit an employee training plan to the Committee on Finance of the Senate and the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives.
“(b) Contents.—The plan submitted under subsection (a) shall—
detail a comprehensive employee training program to ensure adequate customer service training;
detail a schedule for training and the fiscal years during which the training will occur;
detail the funding of the program and relevant information to demonstrate the priority and commitment of resources to the plan;
review the organizational design of customer service;
provide for the implementation of a performance development system; and
provide for at least 16 hours of conflict management training during fiscal year 1999 for employees conducting collection activities.”
Pub. L. 105–206, title III, § 3701, July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 776, provided that:
“In collecting data for the report required under section 1211 of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights 2
(Public Law 104–168
) [set out below], the Secretary of the Treasury or the Secretary’s delegate shall, not later than January 1, 2000
, maintain records of taxpayer complaints of misconduct by Internal Revenue Service
employees on an individual employee basis.”
Use of Pseudonyms by Internal Revenue Service Employees
Pub. L. 105–206, title III, § 3706, July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 778, provided that:
“(a) In General.—Any employee of the Internal Revenue Service may use a pseudonym only if—
adequate justification for the use of a pseudonym is provided by the employee, including protection of personal safety; and
such use is approved by the employee’s supervisor before the pseudonym is used.
“(b) Effective Date.—
Subsection (a) shall apply to requests made after the date of the enactment of this Act [July 22, 1998].”
Reports on Misconduct of IRS Employees
Pub. L. 104–168, title XII, § 1211, July 30, 1996, 110 Stat. 1474, provided that:
“On or before June 1 of each calendar year after 1996, the Secretary of the Treasury shall submit to the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Finance of the Senate a report on—
all categories of instances involving the misconduct of employees of the Internal Revenue Service during the preceding calendar year, and
the disposition during the preceding calendar year of any such instances (without regard to the year of the misconduct).”
Taxpayers’ Rights, Courtesy and Cross-Cultural Relations Training
Pub. L. 109–115, div. A, title II, § 202, Nov. 30, 2005, 119 Stat. 2438, which provided that the Internal Revenue Service was to maintain a training program to ensure that Internal Revenue Service employees were trained in taxpayers’ rights, in dealing courteously with taxpayers, and in cross-cultural relations, was from the Department of the Treasury Appropriations Act, 2006 and was repeated in provisions of subsequent appropriations acts which are not set out in the Code. Similar provisions were also contained in the following prior appropriations acts:
Pub. L. 108–447, div. H, title II, § 202, Dec. 8, 2004, 118 Stat. 3240.
Pub. L. 108–199, div. F, title II, § 202, Jan. 23, 2004, 118 Stat. 318.
Pub. L. 108–7, div. J, title I, § 102, Feb. 20, 2003, 117 Stat. 437.
Pub. L. 107–67, title I, § 102, Nov. 12, 2001, 115 Stat. 523.
Pub. L. 106–554, § 1(a)(3) [title I, § 102], Dec. 21, 2000, 114 Stat. 2763, 2763A–132.
Pub. L. 106–58, title I, § 102, Sept. 29, 1999, 113 Stat. 437.
Pub. L. 105–277, div. A, § 101(h) [title I, § 102], Oct. 21, 1998, 112 Stat. 2681–480, 2681–488.
Pub. L. 105–61, title I, § 102, Oct. 10, 1997, 111 Stat. 1281.
Pub. L. 104–208, div. A, title I, § 101(f) [title I, § 102], Sept. 30, 1996, 110 Stat. 3009–314, 3009–323.
Pub. L. 104–52, title I, § 2, Nov. 19, 1995, 109 Stat. 474.
Pub. L. 103–329, title I, § 2, Sept. 30, 1994, 108 Stat. 2388.
Pub. L. 103–123, title I, § 2, Oct. 28, 1993, 107 Stat. 1232.
Pub. L. 102–393, title I, § 2, Oct. 6, 1992, 106 Stat. 1735.
Basis for Evaluation of Internal Revenue Service Employees
Pub. L. 105–206, title I, § 1204, July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 722, provided that:
“(a) In General.—The Internal Revenue Service shall not use records of tax enforcement results—
to evaluate employees; or
to impose or suggest production quotas or goals with respect to such employees.
“(b) Taxpayer Service.—
The Internal Revenue Service shall use the fair and equitable treatment of taxpayers by employees as one of the standards for evaluating employee performance.
Each appropriate supervisor shall certify quarterly by letter to the Commissioner of Internal Revenue whether or not tax enforcement results are being used in a manner prohibited by subsection (a).
“(d) Technical and Conforming Amendment.—
“(e) Effective Date.—
This section shall apply to evaluations conducted on or after the date of the enactment of this Act [July 22, 1998].”
Pub. L. 100–647, title VI, § 6231, Nov. 10, 1988, 102 Stat. 3734, prohibited Internal Revenue Service use of records of tax enforcement results to evaluate employees or to impose or suggest production quotas or goals, and required quarterly certification that results had not been used in prohibited manner, prior to repeal by Pub. L. 105–206, title I, § 1204(d), July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 722.
Sense of Congress as to Increased Internal Revenue Service Funding for Taxpayer Assistance and Enforcement
Pub. L. 100–203, title X, § 10622, Dec. 22, 1987, 101 Stat. 1330–452, provided that:
“(a) Findings.—The Congress hereby finds that—
the Internal Revenue Service estimates that the amount of taxes owed for 1986 will exceed the amount of taxes collected for such year by $100 billion;
the current taxpayer compliance rate stands at 81.5 percent;
the tax gap can be significantly reduced by enhancing taxpayer assistance services and enforcement; and
the Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives, in its fiscal year 1988 Internal Revenue Service appropriation, took a step in the direction of providing additional funding for taxpayer assistance and enforcement efforts.
“(b) It is the sense of the Congress that:
The Congress increase outlays for the Internal Revenue Service in fiscal year 1989 and fiscal year 1990 in the areas of taxpayer assistance and enforcement by $.7 billion in fiscal year 1989 for a revenue total of $3.2 billion and by $.8 billion in fiscal year 1990 for a revenue total of $4.4 billion. The net revenue increase would be $2.5 billion in fiscal year 1989 and $3.6 billion in fiscal year 1990, or a net revenue increase over the House Appropriations Committee recommendations of $.4 billion in fiscal year 1989 and $1.3 billion in fiscal year 1990.
The Internal Revenue Service offer improved taxpayer assistance and enforcement efforts by using the aforementioned outlays in areas recommended by, or consistent with the recommendations of, the ‘Dorgan Task Force Report’. Taxpayer assistance efforts would include providing expanded taxpayer education programs, instituting pilot programs of taxmobiles in rural areas, and upgrading the quality of telephone assistance. Taxpayer enforcement efforts would include raising the audit rate from 1.1 percent toward 2.5 percent, restoring resources to criminal investigations, and the collection of delinquent accounts.
should undertake an experimental multiyear authorization and 2-year appropriation for the Internal Revenue Service
consistent with the recommendations in Public Law 100–119
, section 201 (Increasing the Statutory Limit on the Public Debt) [2 U.S.C. 621
Increased funding should be provided for compilation and analysis of statistics of income and research.
The Internal Revenue Service must issue a report on the extent of the tax gap and the measures that could be undertaken to decrease the tax gap. The report must utilize more current data than has been utilized recently. The report must be issued by April 15, 1989. The Internal Revenue Service must also report annually on the improvements being made in the audit rate, taxpayer assistance, and enforcement efforts.”
Tax Counseling for the Elderly
Pub. L. 95–600, title I, § 163, Nov. 6, 1978, 92 Stat. 2810, as amended by Pub. L. 99–514, § 2, Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2095, provided that:
“(a) Training and Technical Assistance.—
The Secretary, through the Internal Revenue Service, is authorized to enter into agreements with private or public nonprofit agencies or organizations for the purpose of providing training and technical assistance to prepare volunteers to provide tax counseling assistance for elderly individuals in the preparation of their Federal income tax returns.
“(2) Other assistance.—In addition to any other forms of technical assistance provided under this section, the Secretary may provide—
preferential access to Internal Revenue Service taxpayer service representatives for the purpose of making available technical information needed during the course of the volunteers’ work;
material to be used in making elderly persons aware of the availability of assistance under volunteer taxpayer assistance programs under this section; and
technical materials and publications to be used by such volunteers.
“(b) Powers of the Secretary.—In carrying out his responsibilities under this section, the Secretary is authorized—
to provide assistance to organizations which demonstrate, to the satisfaction of the Secretary, that their volunteers are adequately trained and competent to render effective tax counseling to the elderly;
to provide for the training of such volunteers, and to assist in such training, to insure that such volunteers are qualified to provide tax counseling assistance to elderly individuals;
to provide reimbursement to volunteers through such organizations for transportation, meals, and other expenses incurred by them in training or providing tax counseling assistance under this section, and such other support and assistance as he determines to be appropriate in carrying out the provisions of this section;
to provide for the use of services, personnel, and facilities of Federal executive agencies and of State and local public agencies with their consent, with or without reimbursement therefor; and
to prescribe such rules and regulations as he deems necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.
“(c) Employment of Volunteers.—
“(1) In general.—
Service as a volunteer in any program carried out under this section shall not be considered service as an employee of the United States. Volunteers under such a program shall not be considered Federal employees and shall not be subject to the provisions of law relating to Federal employment, except that the provisions of section 1905 of title 18
, United States Code, shall apply to volunteers as if they were employees of the United States.
Amounts received by volunteers serving in any program carried out under this section as reimbursement for expenses are exempt from taxation under chapters 1 and 21 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
[formerly I.R.C. 1954].
“(d) Publicity Relating to Income Tax Provisions Particularly Important to the Elderly.—
The Secretary shall, from time to time, undertake to direct the attention of elderly individuals to those provisions of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
which are particularly important to taxpayers who are elderly individuals, such as the provisions of section 37 (relating to credit for the elderly) and section 121 (relating to one-time exclusion of gain from sale of principal residence) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
“(e) Definitions.—For purposes of this section—
The term ‘Secretary’ means the Secretary of the Treasury or his delegate.
The term ‘elderly individual’ means an individual who has attained the age of 60 years as of the close of his taxable year.
The term ‘Federal income tax return’ means any return required under chapter 61 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986
with respect to the tax imposed on an individual under chapter 1 of such Code.
“(f) Authorization of Appropriations.—
There are authorized to be appropriated for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this section $2,500,000 for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1979, and $3,500,000 for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1980.”