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IRS ‘People First Initiative’ Ending: What You Need to Know

Beginning April 1, 2020, the IRS implemented the People First Initiative, a temporary relief package – from easing payment guidelines to delaying compliance actions – designed to help taxpayers during the COVID-19 crisis. Key word in that sentence is “temporary.”

The People First Initiative is coming to an end on Tax Day, July 15. As the IRS restarts its compliance and enforcement activities, taxpayers should know that enforcement processes will resume on a case-by-case basis.

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  • had an Installment Agreement and suspended payments between April 1 and July 15, 2020, those payments need to resume by your first due date after July 15. A reminder, under the People First Initiative, the IRS didn’t default agreements, but interest accrued and the balance remained
  • had a pending Offer in Compromise, restart your required payments on July 15. If the OIC is accepted, the IRS will amend the offer to allow for payment of missed payments to be made up at the end of the offer
  • had an accepted Offer in Compromise, restart payments and make up any skipped payments by July 15.  If you can’t, contact the IRS to discuss the situation
  • had a tax debt repayment in private debt collection, you should restart those payments by July 15. If you are looking to establish a new payment arrangement or restructure the existing one because of a change in circumstances due to COVID-19, we can assist you with selecting the best tax relief program for your unique financial situation.

One Last Thing

The bottom line is this – if you haven’t made any tax debt payments since April 1, 2020, it would be in your best interest to restart making those payments by July 15, 2020 to avoid penalties.  If you have a tax problem, now is the time to address it before the IRS gets back into full swing with all its enforcement tools.

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