Tax Regs - RRA98 - Summary
IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998
Plain Language Summary
(Click on headings to see full text.)    

1102(c) - Expansion of Taxpayer Assistant Orders Authority

   Change "the Taxpayer Advocate must consider all the facts in the light most favorable to the taxpayer when deciding whether to issue a TAO (Taxpayer Assistant Order)."

1205 - Employee Training Program

   Impact  "This section will assure that a new emphasis is placed on providing customer service training to those       Service employees who need these skills."

3001 - Burden of Proof aka “guilt until proven innocent”

    Background  Addresses Congress' concern "... that individual and small business taxpayers, who are generally tax compliant are at a disadvantage when forced to litigate with the Service"   "When taxpayers meet the prerequisites for a shift in the burden of proof, the Service will have the burden to show the correctness of the Service's position, rather than rely upon the taxpayer to 'disprove' the Service's determination"Background  Addresses Congress' concern "... that individual and small business taxpayers, who are generally tax compliant are at a disadvantage when forced to litigate with the Service"   "When taxpayers meet the prerequisites for a shift in the burden of proof, the Service will have the burden to show the correctness of the Service's position, rather than rely upon the taxpayer to 'disprove' the Service's determination"

3201 - Relief from Joint & Several Liability on Joint Return

    Changes: "There are three ways to obtain relief: Expanded Innocent Spouse Relief, Separate Liability Election, and Equitable Relief."... : "There are three ways to obtain relief: Expanded Innocent Spouse Relief, Separate Liability Election, and Equitable Relief."... "A large number of taxpayers already in the collection stream will be entitled to seek relief because the rules apply not only to any liabilities arising after the date of enactment, but also to liabilities that are unpaid on that date.

3202 - Suspension of Statute of Limitations for Disability

   ImpactImpact: "The suspension of the Statute of Limitations during a period of financial disability will allow refund claims outside of the time periods currently set forth..."

3309 - Abatement of Interest/Presidentially Declared Disasters

    Impact Impact "The IRS must take necessary actions to ensure that interest is abated during the extension period [granted due to Presidentially declared disaster]." "The IRS must take necessary actions to ensure that interest is abated during the extension period [granted due to Presidentially declared disaster]."

3414 - Prohibition of Threat of Audit to Coerce TRAC Agreement

    Change Change "Specific direction in statute to instruct employees not to threaten an audit to coerce a taxpayer..." "Specific direction in statute to instruct employees not to threaten an audit to coerce a taxpayer..."

3417 - Prohibition on IRS Contact of 3rd Parties  - Without Prior Notice

    Change "Change "The new law imposes three obligations upon the Service.  First, the Service must give taxpayers a general warning at the beginning of the examination and collection process that the Service might contact third parties about the taxpayer's tax liabilities.   Second, the Service must keep track of the third parties who are contacted.   Third, the Service must provide that information periodically to the taxpayer as well as be prepared to release it whenever the taxpayer may ask."

3308 - Notice and Computation of Interest

    Change Change "The provision requires that all taxpayer notices containing an amount of interest required to be paid by the taxpayer must include a detailed computation of interest charged and a citation to the Code section under which such interest is imposed. "The provision requires that all taxpayer notices containing an amount of interest required to be paid by the taxpayer must include a detailed computation of interest charged and a citation to the Code section under which such interest is imposed.

3442 - Accounting of Sales of Seized Property

    Change Change "...adds [a] new section that requires the Service to give the taxpayer whose property has been sold or redeemed a copy of the record that the service is required to keep and the amount from each sale applied to the taxpayer's account and the remaining balance. "...adds [a] new section that requires the Service to give the taxpayer whose property has been sold or redeemed a copy of the record that the service is required to keep and the amount from each sale applied to the taxpayer's account and the remaining balance.

3461 - Procedures for Extension of Statute of Limitations by Agreement

    Change Change "The authority to extend the collection statute of limitations by agreement ends on December 31, 1999 [except in the case of installment agreements].  Any extension of the collection statute already in effect on December 31, 1999, will expire on December 31, 2002. "The authority to extend the collection statute of limitations by agreement ends on December 31, 1999 [except in the case of installment agreements].  Any extension of the collection statute already in effect on December 31, 1999, will expire on December 31, 2002.

3462 - Offers-in-Compromise

    Impact Impact "This provision expands the authority for the Service to accept offers in compromise." "This provision expands the authority for the Service to accept offers in compromise."

3466 - Application of Certain Fair Debt Collection Procedures

    Change: Change: This provision incorporates certain restrictions of the Fair debt Collection Practices Act relating to communication with the taxpayer and to any actions the consequence of which would harass or abuse the taxpayer. 

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