Saturday, 19 January, 2019


US shutdown won't stop IRS tax refunds going out, Trump administration says

Bloomberg News Bloomberg News
Conrad Doyle | 10 January, 2019, 04:38

The White House says that tax refunds will go out on time during the partial government shutdown.

The announcement is a reversal of a long-standing policy to withhold refunds during shutdowns.

The White House Office of Management and Budget announced the decision Monday.

But Russell Vought, acting director of the White House budget office, says customary rules will be changed to make funding available to pay them.

The IRS could accept tax returns, but refunds would be delayed until after the shutdown ended.

While many taxpayers may not feel this is a great loss, they'll still have to pay their taxes - and the shutdown has created a good deal of uncertainty for everyone planning to file their tax returns in the coming months.

The White House will issue guidance that will make the tax move official by detailing how the government will go about issuing the refunds.

The country's tax collector is among the federal agencies affected by the partial government shutdown, which is now in its third week.

"We keep trying to call people at I.R.S. and Treasury", said Daniel Rubin, a spokesman for the Ways and Means Committee, "and there's no one there". President Donald Trump has said he's unwilling to reopen the government unless it includes funding for a border wall between the United States and Mexico. If the shutdown lasts even longer than that there could be a delay in tax returns, but people in Rapid City aren't anxious about the shutdown affecting tax season. Last year, between January 29 and March 2, the IRS paid out more than $147 billion in tax refunds to 48.5 million households.

Tax refunds aren't paid with money appropriated by Congress, but the workers who process the tax refunds are. But Miller said the agency is still taking your money.

No end is in sight for the shutdown yet and Trump says he's not willing to bend. Trump "has directed OMB to take steps to mitigate the impact of the shutdown on everyday Americans", Vice President Mike Pence told reporters at the briefing.

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