The federal government shut down at midnight Friday (January 19) after the Senate failed to pass a continuing spending resolution that would have funded the government going forward. The shutdown started nine days before the Jan. 29 scheduled start of tax season, and it is unclear how tax season will be affected.
During the last federal government shutdown, in 2013, the IRS continued to process e-filed tax returns and paper returns that contained remittances, but taxpayer services were suspended and refunds were not issued.
All non-excepted functions will shut down, including IRS headquarters and administrative functions, audits and examinations, processing of paper returns that do not include remittances, legal counsel, and taxpayer services.
The National Treasury Employees Union estimated last week that 87% of IRS employees will be furloughed by the shutdown (i.e., placed “in a temporary status without duties and pay because of lack of work or funds or other nondisciplinary reasons” (5 C.F.R. §752.402)).
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