Tuesday, October 1, 2013

IRS - Treasury & courts shut down

Treasury Announces Shutdown  Plans for IRS and Other Agencies,(Sep. 30, 2013)
The Treasury Department announced on September 27 procedures for the IRS and other agencies under its jurisdiction in the event of a government shutdown after the end of fiscal year (FY) 2013. However, the federal courts have announced they will remain open for approximately 10 days after September 30, 2013, if the federal government shuts down because of a lapse in appropriations.
Shutdown Nears
The federal government’s current fiscal year ended after September 30, 2013. The Obama Administration and Republicans in Congress appear far apart on any agreement for a short-term fix or an FY 2014 budget
The Treasury Department explained that many taxpayer services, including the IRS’s telephone customer service functions, would cease during a government shutdown. The IRS would halt nonautomated collections and tax-processing activities but would continue activities necessary for the protection of government property. Additionally, the Treasury Department noted that taxpayers with appointments related to examinations (audits), collection, Appeals or Taxpayer Advocate cases should assume their meetings are cancelled during a government shutdown.
Activities at other Treasury Department agencies would also be reduced in the event of a shutdown. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) would provide some support for its domestic and foreign law enforcement customers but would halt other Bank Secrecy Act regulatory and foreign and domestic law enforcement support functions. The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) would cease its audits.
Federal Judiciary
The federal judiciary will remain open for business for approximately 10 business days," the Administrative Offices of the U.S. Courts (AO) posted on its website on September 26. AO added that it will reassess the situation around October 15, 2013, and provide more guidance if necessary. "All proceedings and deadlines remain in effect as scheduled, unless otherwise advised. Case Management/Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) will remain in operation for the electronic filing of documents with courts," AO explained.
Orderly Shutdown
Following a shutdown, nonexcepted federal employees cannot perform work activities other than orderly shutdown activities. On September 17, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) instructed federal agencies that an orderly shutdown of furloughed employees should take no more than three or four hours to provide necessary notices and contact information, secure their files, complete time and attendance records, and otherwise make preparations to preserve their work.
Websites, Mobile Devices
All federal departments and agencies maintain websites. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has instructed that, if an agency’s website is shut down, users should be directed to a standard notice that the website is offline and the information on the website may be out-of-date. The OMB also instructed furloughed employees not to use mobile devices or remote computer connections. In some cases, furloughed employees may be asked to turn in their mobile devices until they return to work, the OMB noted.

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