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IRS Rant  
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 2065 times:

So, back in September I get a letter from the IRS informing me that they recalculated my taxes for 2010 and found that I owe an additional $624 ($600 + $24 in interest). The explanation they provided basically said that based on employer information, they recalculated and if I wanted additional information I should refer to page 7 of the mailing. My wife (a CPA) and I (the tax preparer) reviewed our filing and found nothing. (We were wrong, but that's not the point here).

Page 7 said "No additional information available."

So, I sent back the appropriate form declining to accept their adjustment and asked for additional information.

15 or so days later I receive another letter from the IRS thanking me for my correspondence and informing me that they will get back to me within 30 days. A few weeks later I receive a letter from the IRS informing me that they recalculated my Form 2441 - Child Care and Dependant Care Expenses. No explanation as to why it was re-calculated, just that they recalculated it and I still owed the money + interest.

So, I call them and they tell me I need to fax or mail any request for information. Which I did, requesting the specific reason they recalculated our 2441. I even gave them suggestions...ineligible dependant, non-qualified caregiver, missing information, etc. Again, a couple of weeks later I receive a letter thanking me for my correspondence related to my "under-reported tax situation" and that additional information would be forthcoming within 30 days.

Well, yesterday, I finally get the information I needed (still fairly vague, but the wife and I were able to piece it together) and determined that we did owe the money. Of course, this correspondence did not include the final amount, since interest continued to accrue on the original amount. Spent 30 minutes on hold to find out the amount was now $636, so long as it's paid by the 29th. I was also told that I would receive a "demand letter" in March, yes March, via certified mail. I explained that the check would be in the mail this evening, but lady said, it's just procedure and I can ignore it if I've already paid the bill.

Un-freaking-believable. This is efficiency in government? This would have been a done deal if the IRS had provided all the information they had with their first contact. Not only is it costing me an additional $12 in interest, but the taxpayers (that's you and me, 51% of the population) have paid for the IRS to answer my requests for further information, several mailings and apparently a certified letter that I can ignore.

And, these folks (the government) are asking for more money and responsibility???

End of rant.

[Edited 2013-01-22 19:28:57]


When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinemt99 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 6574 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 2046 times:
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Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
believable. This is efficiency in government? This would have been a done deal if the IRS had provided all the information they had with their first contact

Or even sooner if you had done your taxes correctly the first time around   dont blame others for your own fault. Take responsability for you actions.

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
taxpayers (that's you and me, 51% of the population

More like 53% maybe ? 100%-47%= 53%



Step into my office, baby
User currently offlineBraniff747SP From United States of America, joined Oct 2008, 2967 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 2036 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
. This is efficiency in government?

Of course not. The US government is notoriously inefficient, and the IRS is the prime example.
The bureaucracy is so incredibly absurd it seems like it is red tape for the the sake of red tape... The whole tax system is imbecilic; it seems like all it would take would be a group with a smatter of logic about them to straighten things in a sensible manner.



The 747 will always be the TRUE queen of the skies!
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 3, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2025 times:

Quoting mt99 (Reply 1):
Or even sooner if you had done your taxes correctly the first time around dont blame others for your own fault. Take responsability for you actions.


I absolutely take responsibility for my actions. I made a mistake and I have already signed the forms (plural), written the check, licked the envelope, affixed the stamp and dropped it in the appropriate recepticle at the post office.

But, it is my opinion that if the IRS, or any other agency, determines that I (or anyone else) has made an error, they should at least provide the necessary documentation with initial contact so that it can be all cleared up as quickly as possible. They, in my opinion failed to do that.

Two things:

One, is the efficiency, or lack thereof, of this particular agency and, by extension (fairly or unfairly) the US Federal Government. And two:

quite simply, the first contact was a "hey, you screwed up, send us money" letter. Would you have written the check based on that?

[Edited 2013-01-22 19:44:05]


When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15719 posts, RR: 26
Reply 4, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2024 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 3):
One, is the efficiency, or lack thereof, of this particular agency.

It probably did cost them more than $636 to extract the $636 from you.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinetugger From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 5432 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 1999 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 4):
It probably did cost them more than $636 to extract the $636 from you.

And this is why the Republican's during Reagan's time support the push to remove the "lower 50%" from the tax rolls. It cost near as much to police as it brought in.

However that was of course a mistake as that group was then disconnected from the reality that they too must have a vested interest (that would be defined as an "investment") in what they are voting on.

Sad but true.

Tugg



I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7832 posts, RR: 52
Reply 6, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 1987 times:

There are few things that the left and right agree on, but one of them is that are tax system is all screwed up. They don't agree on how to fix it, but at least there is a little common ground lol.

Yeah, it seems like a bloated bureaucracy. To our foreign friends, any tips on how to do a tax system simply and efficiently? We sure aren't doing a good job!



Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
User currently offlineflymia From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7125 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 1976 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
This is efficiency in government?


It is a joke huh? I have spent time working in the Federal Government. On Capitol Hill and currently with DHS and even in law enforcement and legal work the amount of procedures and things you need to go around are insane. Everyone who works with it hates it but there is nothing ever done to change it.

Quoting mt99 (Reply 1):
Or even sooner if you had done your taxes correctly the first time around dont blame others for your own fault. Take responsability for you actions.


He knows, he is just pointing out how is the U.S. government was a business every thing it does would be bankrupted and shut down by now.

I am all for getting someone from Visa, American Express, Google, Coca Cola, Southwest Airlines etc.. etc.. to be paid to review how inefficient the government is and give ways to fix it.



"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
User currently offlineAA7295 From Australia, joined Aug 2007, 620 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 1959 times:

You Americans.....

I love how you think it's only your country the is operated inefficiently. Cracks me up every time I hear an American rant on.

Try living in Australia where tax is 48.5% for any amount over AU$100,000. Plus the ATO (our version of the IRS) can audit you anytime they want, but you can only review your tax information 2 years after the financial year has concluded.


User currently offlineAirframeAS From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 14150 posts, RR: 24
Reply 9, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 1946 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
recalculated my taxes for 2010

Wait.... Why are they looking at something from 2010 and now just saying something, present time 2013? This makes no sense. Kinda odd to me that they discovered an error now when they could have caught it then.



A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 10, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 1940 times:

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 9):
Wait.... Why are they looking at something from 2010 and now just saying something, present time 2013? This makes no sense. Kinda odd to me that they discovered an error now when they could have caught it then.


I'm about so concerned about that. I'm thinking the law says they have 3 years to review previous tax returns. And, I think, if they find something, they can go back further.

I probably just caught up in some random audit.

It just burned my ass that the process went about 3 months longer than it had to.

Quoting flymia (Reply 7):
It is a joke huh?


I spent some time with an FAA inspector while we were both out of town, and he recounted, in intimate detail, the paperwork he had to fill out in order to account for his time out of town.

I mean, I understand that there is room for corruption and/or falsification, but the hoops he needed to go through were ridiculous. It seemed it took as much time to get through the forms as he did to get through the audit.

[Edited 2013-01-22 22:14:00]


When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlinezippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5478 posts, RR: 13
Reply 11, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 1934 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):

The "Guvment" is after me for several hundred bucks due to my stock purchase plan 2010. Amazing how they spend all this time and resources and go after someone like me where these big ass CEO's and corporate types get away with whatevr. And now my tax happy state Maryland is getting in on the act. I could go on and on but...



I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
User currently offlineGeezer From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 1479 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days ago) and read 1902 times:

I sure hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you'se guys aint seen nuttin yet !

P.S. That's really all I have to say, but I MUST write at LEAST another sentence, because one-line posts are against the law !

Now........go read about the big fire in Chicago.

Charley



Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result; Albert Einstein
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8191 posts, RR: 8
Reply 13, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 1781 times:

In reality I have to acknowledge the complexity of the IRS systems, along with the age of some of the hardware & software.

Take that scrambled can of worms and add in the politicians throwing in changes during the year and also at the last minute.

We're lucky that it works at the level it does work at.

And, let's be honest, do you see the GOP controlled House jumping in with some serious money for major long term upgrades? Sure, just as soon as the deliver major increases in funding for State Department Security.


User currently offlineKFLLCFII From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 3296 posts, RR: 30
Reply 14, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1752 times:

As much as I hate the current system, any "deal" they make to overhaul it for the "better" is only going to hurt the same people it always does the worst...the middle class.


"About the only way to look at it, just a pity you are not POTUS KFLLCFII, seems as if we would all be better off."
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21530 posts, RR: 55
Reply 15, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 1676 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 10):
I spent some time with an FAA inspector while we were both out of town, and he recounted, in intimate detail, the paperwork he had to fill out in order to account for his time out of town.

I mean, I understand that there is room for corruption and/or falsification, but the hoops he needed to go through were ridiculous.

On the other hand, if it were discovered that he was screwing around on the government dime while on a business trip, we'd be up in arms to the FAA about him wasting taxpayer dollars, and rightly so.

I tend to believe that bureaucracies get a worse rap than they deserve - yes, they can be completely infuriating with all the steps you have to take to ensure that things are done the right way. But one of the jobs of a bureaucracy is to be consistent - if the regulations were applied unequally because there wasn't enough standardization in the process, and verification that the process was being followed, then we'd be pissed. And again, rightly so, as it's the government's job to apply the rules fairly, equally, and predictably.

Let's also remember that those in government are not always the brightest bulbs in the box. And much as we might want that to be different, it's probably for the best that those who would do a better job in government are working in the private sector. The alternative is to up the pay of the government workers in order to attract better candidates, and that's not likely to go over that well.

There's always room for improvement, of course, but I suspect that when viewed relative to other governments, the US government functions pretty damn well, and we'd regret the results if we tried to make wholesale changes.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineIMissPiedmont From United States of America, joined May 2001, 6281 posts, RR: 34
Reply 16, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 1670 times:

Waste in government? I'm shocked. The IRS is just a cog in the wheel of money wasting. Working at the airport my rant is against the military wasting so much money, pisses me off every time a hear an F-16 take off so that some pilot can go play around west of town for an hour or so.

Back to the IRS though. I generally have no problems in my dealings with them. I would question the interest though. I owe a hell of a lot more than $600 and my interest is only about $20 per month.



Quit calling an airport ramp "Tarmac" and a taxiway "runway".
User currently offlineDarksnowynight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1347 posts, RR: 3
Reply 17, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1660 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
And, these folks (the government) are asking for more money and responsibility???

Lol, who said anything about asking? Better start liking it.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 3):

But, it is my opinion that if the IRS, or any other agency, determines that I (or anyone else) has made an error, they should at least provide the necessary documentation with initial contact so that it can be all cleared up as quickly as possible.

Why? If you made the error, I don't see why they would owe you a particular type of process. They can make it take five years if they want.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 3):

quite simply, the first contact was a "hey, you screwed up, send us money" letter. Would you have written the check based on that?

Of course not. But I would understand that this is their sandbox, not mine. Whatever the process is, it is. We have to live with that.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 4):
It probably did cost them more than $636 to extract the $636 from you.

To send a few letters?

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 9):
Wait.... Why are they looking at something from 2010 and now just saying something, present time 2013? This makes no sense. Kinda odd to me that they discovered an error now when they could have caught it then.

Any number of things can trigger an audit, or a situation like this. My ex-wife got audited for her last year's returns, and the six previous to that, because of a deduction I took. Granted, a lot of that comes from issues discovered far beyond the deduction I wrote off, but what I got from that is that the IRS pretty much looks at your tax history like a Jenga tower. Pull out one wrong piece, and they can knock the whole thing over.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 10):
And, I think, if they find something, they can go back further.

Yes. Based on my own limited experience, it looks like they can go back to any return that has your name or ssn on it.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 10):
It just burned my ass that the process went about 3 months longer than it had to.

How long should it have taken? Given their size and complexity, there's an awful lot about how they operate that you simply do not know. Be as careful as you can in the future is what I would say. Perhaps next time, this incident will look simple.

Quoting Geezer (Reply 12):
Now........go read about the big fire in Chicago.

Charley

Lol, yes. That was an interesting and informative thread. Thanks for posting it.

Quoting Mir (Reply 15):

I tend to believe that bureaucracies get a worse rap than they deserve - yes, they can be completely infuriating with all the steps you have to take to ensure that things are done the right way. But one of the jobs of a bureaucracy is to be consistent

I agree. There's a lot they need to do, and it's always a lot easier to complain about something than truly understand it. In my own extensive dealings with the FAA (just as an example), I have yet to encounter a single incident that justifies the level of loathing and paranoia a lot of individuals in our field carry about.

For the IRS, man, I don't envy those guys. Their whole job is to be unpopular, and make sure our gov't and way of life are sustained, at the same time! I don't think I could what they do on a gov't salary.



Posting without Knowledge is simply Tolerated Vandalism... We are the Vandals.
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 18, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 1593 times:

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 17):
Why? If you made the error, I don't see why they would owe you a particular type of process. They can make it take five years if they want.
Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 17):
Of course not. But I would understand that this is their sandbox, not mine. Whatever the process is, it is. We have to live with that.



Really? You think that they should be able to create a convoluted process that costs time, money and resources just because its their sandbox. Maybe you forget, but it's OUR sandbox. It's OUR money they frittered away with this process they've developed. Or, the ineptitude of the person or persons that handled my particular case...though I'll bet that automation played a part.

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 17):
To send a few letters?


Yes. And the salaries of the folks that had to field my questions, that could have been doing other things. Was it $636, who knows, but there is overhead to everything that happens. By the way, you did read the part where they will still send me a demand letter, that will be dated MARCH 24th, via Registered Mail ($10.95), that I can "ignore" because I will have already paid the tax. It's freaking ridiculous.

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 17):
Yes. Based on my own limited experience, it looks like they can go back to any return that has your name or ssn on it.


No, there is a time limit...5 years pops into my head and I think that might be rolling. I think they have 3 years initially, then they can go back 5 indefinitely. Example: They found a problem with my 2010, they can go back to 2005, if they find a problem with 2005, they can go back to 2000 and so on. I'll see if I can find that nugget of information in the 70,000+ pages of the US Tax Code.

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 17):
Be as careful as you can in the future is what I would say.


I've been filing tax returns for the past 28 years. I am as careful as I can be and our taxes are reviewed by my CPA wife (who does not do taxes for a living, but is versed in the process). But, when you're dealing with 70,000+ pages, mistakes will happen.

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 17):
How long should it have taken?


The tax payer should be provided with all the information he needs to make a decision with the first contact.

Did you read my intial post?

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
Page 7 said "No additional information available."


Apparently there was more information available. The one form I made the mistake on (out of the 9 forms and/or schedules that constituted my return) and the nature of the mistake.

In that case, the additional tax would have been paid in early October instead of mid-January. That would be a win for all, wouldn't it?



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineqf002 From Australia, joined Jul 2011, 2949 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 1579 times:

Quoting AA7295 (Reply 8):
Try living in Australia where tax is 48.5% for any amount over AU$100,000

Huh? I think you'll find the top threshold is 45% on income over $180k. The rate at $100k is 37%.

Sure, that's more than the federal rates in the US, but we don't have state based taxes. We also don't pay tax until we earn more than $18k --you pay tax from the first dollar in the US.


User currently offlineMaverick623 From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 5573 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 1569 times:

Quoting qf002 (Reply 19):
We also don't pay tax until we earn more than $18k --you pay tax from the first dollar in the US.

Only for FICA and Medicare taxes. The standard deduction plus the personal exemption in 2012 came out to $9750. In essence, if you earned less than that, you owe no personal federal income tax.



"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 21, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 hours ago) and read 1518 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
No, there is a time limit...5 years pops into my head and I think that might be rolling. I think they have 3 years initially, then they can go back 5 indefinitely. Example: They found a problem with my 2010, they can go back to 2005, if they find a problem with 2005, they can go back to 2000 and so on. I'll see if I can find that nugget of information in the 70,000+ pages of the US Tax Code.

Ok, near as I can tell, after wading through the "lawyer-speak":

They have 3 years to come up with something and then can go back 10 years, unless you have falsified a return...then you're fair game, regardless of time. I guess there may be a statute of limitation, but I didn't see it.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineDarksnowynight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1347 posts, RR: 3
Reply 22, posted (1 year 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 1484 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 21):

They have 3 years to come up with something and then can go back 10 years, unless you have falsified a return...then you're fair game, regardless of time. I guess there may be a statute of limitation, but I didn't see it.

I guess that sounds about right. My former wife's problem happened when we both declared our daughter as a dependent. Though I'm not the custodial parent, in the state where we were divorced, the rule is that whomever pays >=51% of the total child support gets the deduction. Since I was paying (and still do) 100% of that, I filed accordingly. It took the IRS almost a year, but they found the discrepancy and audited her. In so doing, enough "irregularities" were uncovered that they wound up unearthing every return she'd filed since 1997 (this was last year). If it makes you feel any better, I'm sure her IRS troubles are far greater than yours...

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):

Really? You think that they should be able to create a convoluted process that costs time, money and resources just because its their sandbox.

It looks that way to you (and me). But you're seeing it through your situation. I'm sure they deal with all kinds of crap that's far worse, and presumably at some point, this "process" was deemed, if not necessary, than at least better than whatever they have been doing prior to that...

They may have "created" this process, but we have to keep in mind that enough regular citizens "created" the need for it.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Maybe you forget, but it's OUR sandbox. It's OUR money they frittered away with this process they've developed.

So what, then? If you feel the need to tell them how to do their job, then by all means, no one here will stop you. But like I've been saying, there's bound to be a great deal more to it than what you or I can see.

And besides, if you really think it's not their money, try not paying them at all next year...

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Yes. And the salaries of the folks that had to field my questions, that could have been doing other things. Was it $636, who knows, but there is overhead to everything that happens. By the way, you did read the part where they will still send me a demand letter, that will be dated MARCH 24th, via Registered Mail ($10.95), that I can "ignore" because I will have already paid the tax. It's freaking ridiculous.

Very true. However, it's not as though they went out and hired someone(s) to do all that just to get $600+ out of fr8mech. Those folks would be there doing their job even you'd never had a problem.

I'll agree the demand letter is a bit much in your case, but it probably exists because they routinely deal with people a good bit more delinquent than you'll ever be. That is where you want to be looking for where the inefficiency starts.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
The tax payer should be provided with all the information he needs to make a decision with the first contact.

That would be nice. But again, there's probably a reason they do it different to that. It seems to me that most cases really aren't as cut and dried as yours. In my ex's case, she got a similar treatment mainly because they didn't know the extent of the damage at that time, but that there was absolutely a huge problem there.

I think the thrust of your problem is that (and I'm just guessing here) you seem to be caught up in a "one size fits all" solution that the IRS has developed. While that may be frustrating, and while we can say it should be more tailored to individual situations, imagine how much more yet of a bureaucracy that would in and of itself create...



Posting without Knowledge is simply Tolerated Vandalism... We are the Vandals.
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 23, posted (1 year 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 1476 times:

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 22):
It seems to me that most cases really aren't as cut and dried as yours.

Even more reason that all the information the IRS has should be made available so that the tax payer can make an informed decision without having to make repeated contacts.

You're right, though. I can't possibly see what benefit it serves the IRS to dole out the information piece-meal. So, there must be something I can't see. Maybe they do that so that the interest keeps piling up. Who knows?

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 22):
So what, then? If you feel the need to tell them how to do their job, then by all means,

Actually, I have sent them some feedback. I will await their response, with bated breath.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineDarksnowynight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1347 posts, RR: 3
Reply 24, posted (1 year 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 1472 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 23):
Even more reason that all the information the IRS has should be made available so that the tax payer can make an informed decision without having to make repeated contacts.

You're right, though. I can't possibly see what benefit it serves the IRS to dole out the information piece-meal. So, there must be something I can't see. Maybe they do that so that the interest keeps piling up. Who knows?

My best (most educated) guess would be that there are just so many situations where even they don't know what the balance will be just yet; just that there is something that needs to be squared away.

Believe it or not, I would actually prefer that, to a one time mailure that tells me everything. But then again, I'm the kind of guy who brings the work phone on vacation, because I hate finding "surprises" waiting later on. Knowing something's up early on is better for me than getting it all, much further down the line. Preferences, I guess...

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 23):
Actually, I have sent them some feedback. I will await their response, with bated breath.

Good idea. In my experience, the IRS isn't nearly as bad as people think. They sure do get nasty if they think you're screwing around with them, but short of that, they're pretty reasonable. Hopefully they'll send you something better than a form letter back.



Posting without Knowledge is simply Tolerated Vandalism... We are the Vandals.
User currently offlinehOmsAR From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 1165 posts, RR: 0
Reply 25, posted (1 year 6 months 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 1463 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 15):
Quoting fr8mech (Reply 10):
I spent some time with an FAA inspector while we were both out of town, and he recounted, in intimate detail, the paperwork he had to fill out in order to account for his time out of town.

I mean, I understand that there is room for corruption and/or falsification, but the hoops he needed to go through were ridiculous.

On the other hand, if it were discovered that he was screwing around on the government dime while on a business trip, we'd be up in arms to the FAA about him wasting taxpayer dollars, and rightly so.

This is one of the things that really frustrates me. I've worked in transit (government agencies) for several years, and understand that many other government agencies are like this as well. All of the crap you have to do for "accountability" (which are often rules imposed by know-nothing politicians trying to make good on a promise to "make government more accountable") often costs far more than whatever benefits you get from doing something.

You can spend 10 minutes of your day making what should be an obvious decision to improve something, but then you have to spend the next 7.5 hours justifying it. This quickly leads to frustration and mental burnout, followed by apathy when folks realize that any little bit of work they do just leads to a lot more work later, and when they can not do that little bit of work (and the mountains of subsequent paperwork that little bit of work generates) and still go home with the same pay, the choice on an individual level becomes fairly obvious.

Then you have the know-nothing politicians (and their equally ignorant "taxpayer advocate" friends) who whine and scream about everything, even when it's a good long-term investment. I remember a few years ago a big public outcry because some state agency in Wisconsin had decided to buy iPads for its staff. There was tons of screaming about government waste (you know, $50,000 worth of computer equipment for a state with an annual budget in the tens of billions of dollars), but none of them seemed interested in the fact that the productivity gains from buying these tablets would quickly pay off in the first few months.

It wasn't the government bureaucrats that were the problem. It was the politicians and the few activists that wanted to chastise the bureaucrats for making a decision that, had it been a private company, would have been made and approved in a matter of minutes.

Quoting Mir (Reply 15):
Let's also remember that those in government are not always the brightest bulbs in the box. And much as we might want that to be different, it's probably for the best that those who would do a better job in government are working in the private sector. The alternative is to up the pay of the government workers in order to attract better candidates, and that's not likely to go over that well.

Is it really for the best? Private sector companies have one goal. To make themselves (and their owners) as much money as possible. Government has a different goal: (In theory) to see to it that everybody in the country can succeed and thrive, and have good living conditions, etc. In other words, to look out for the common good. If you don't have the best and the brightest looking out for the common good, the common good suffers. The US is a perfect example of that (extensive poverty, including a large number of working poor, for a supposed "first-world" nation; poor public education, especially in the largest cities; high crime rates, etc.).

Further, if certain government jobs paid better, and thus were able to attract better quality workers, you could probably get away with having a much smaller government for the same total output of services (or, in reality, much better service, because you don't have the dead weight of a bloated bureaucracy getting in the way of doing stuff). This could lead to, for example, an IRS that had a better IT system and better programming that would be able to more quickly identify situations such as the OP's, with better supporting documentation, and in a much quicker timeframe. If there were questions, it would allow for faster response times to those questions, because more resources could be dedicated to individual customer service as fewer resources would be consumed by just keeping the system running.

This would require effective management. But such effective management can probably make more money and get better benefits at Target, or Chase Bank (on second thought, maybe banks aren't the best examples of effective management), or wherever, than they could working for the federal government. The result is you get the leftovers. And the result of that is what we get with folks complaining about a bloated and inefficient government.

To fix it would require an intelligent approach, and, in part, offering better total compensation to fewer people in management functions of government. Of course, the people that whine loudest about how inefficient and ineffective government is are usually the same people that would whine about how much a government worker would make if we paid them properly for the responsibility they have.



I was raised by a cup of coffee.
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 26, posted (1 year 6 months 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 1415 times:

Quoting Darksnowynight (Reply 24):
My best (most educated) guess would be that there are just so many situations where even they don't know what the balance will be just yet; just that there is something that needs to be squared away.

Nope, they knew what the balance was, interest included, with the first contact.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4510 posts, RR: 2
Reply 27, posted (1 year 6 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1369 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 3):
But, it is my opinion that if the IRS, or any other agency, determines that I (or anyone else) has made an error, they should at least provide the necessary documentation with initial contact so that it can be all cleared up as quickly as possible. They, in my opinion failed to do that.

On this I agreee with you, but just like any other business, you can submit your claim to them with that info. Maybe they can make ammends in the future. However without more pull, I am not sure that they will.

By any chance, did you have someone else do your taxes for you?
Did you use any software Quicken, Turbotax or ther others?

If so, you may be able to address your greivences with them. Their software or math mistakes may have contributed.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5365 posts, RR: 14
Reply 28, posted (1 year 6 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 1301 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 27):
By any chance, did you have someone else do your taxes for you?
Did you use any software Quicken, Turbotax or ther others?

TurboTax. But, it was my error. I understand what I did wrong...now that the information was finally provided. Simple clerical error.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
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