The Internal Revenue Service may be forced to shut down operations and furlough its staff if Congress is unable to pass legislation that would continue funding for federal agencies. Speaking to the the National Press Club, IRS Commission Douglas Shulman said that the tax filing deadline will remain April 18th, 2011, even if the government were to shut down over budget issues. Shulman noted that in the event of a closure, the IRS "will be accepting tax returns. Most returns are processed automatically and will not experience any delays." He also encouraged taxpayers to file electronically.
The current federal continuing resolution expires at midnight on Friday, April 8th. Absent a further continuing budget resolution, the IRS would close down on Monday, April 11, according to the broad contingency plans outlined by the Office of Management and Budget.
Joe Kristan, CPA, of Roth & Company, has posted an electronic communication the IRS sent out to the professional community concerning the potential shutdown. The IRS is advising that tax returns will still be processed and refunds will still be issued, although there could be delays in the manual processing of tax returns mailed in or checks being sent out.
- What happens in the event of a government shutdown?
- How the federal budget process is supposed to work.
- April 18 filing deadline is firm even if the federal government is forced to close (Don't Mess With Taxes)
- Progress Reported on Budget Talks, but No Deal Yet (NYT)