New Report Exposes Major Mistake by IRS

New Report Exposes Major Mistake by IRS

( – An audit report from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) released in March shows the IRS sent stimulus payments to multiple deceased Americans and, even after learning about the mistake, erroneously sent out a second set of checks to many of the same people. The money came from Congressional legislation passed to give citizens stimulus payments to relieve economic stress induced by the COVID-19 pandemic. The total taxpayer funds erroneously released to dead people was about $64 million in 2021 and $1.4 billion in 2020.

The Government Accountability Office reported the first set of mistakes back in 2020. The errors came from a programming issue, which the TIGTA notified the IRS about in April 2021. Despite this, the IRS sent out additional funds to people who were no longer alive without correcting the problem.

Most deceased people who received checks were listed as dependents on someone else’s tax returns. They had died before January 1, 2021. The audit also unveiled additional issues, such as instances where the IRS sent money to people like non-citizens who weren’t eligible for payments. All in all, it reported a total of 1.2 million “potentially erroneous payments,” as of September 2021.

The TIGTA recommended multiple solutions to the IRS to prevent these issues in the future, such as making programming changes and sharing information with their territories to allow for the recovery of duplicate documents. The tax agency agreed to take steps to avoid similar occurrences in the event of future stimulus payments. However, many are still calling on the agency to take the matter more seriously and develop better means to avoid wasting taxpayers’ money.

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