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Accounting Today
August 31, 2021

IRS tax lawsuits decreased in federal courts
By Michael Cohn

The amount of civil tax lawsuits filed by the Internal Revenue Service in federal court this year is only half the number of a decade ago, but has held steady since last year. A report issued Tuesday by Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse attributed the decline to the funding and staffing cuts at the IRS over the year, which has led to a plummeting number of IRS audits and collection enforcement. The latest available data from the federal courts indicated that in July 2021, only 47 new federal civil tax lawsuits were filed, according to TRAC. Over the past 10 months, there have been just 446 suits. If the same pace of filings continues for the final two months of fiscal year 2021, TRAC projects the number of new tax lawsuits this year will be 535, approximately the same level seen during this past fiscal year, when 520 lawsuits were filed. While the number of tax lawsuits has stayed consistent since last year, it represents a big change from recent years. Five years ago there were 905 new cases, while 10 years ago there were 1,121 tax filings, more than double the number today. In 2008 there were 1,357.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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