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Pandemic Remote Work a ‘Paradigm Shift’ for IRS, Official Says

June 18, 2020, 6:45 PM

The IRS division tasked with helping small businesses and self-employed taxpayers significantly increased the number of its employees that can work remotely during the coronavirus pandemic, according to an agency official.

Eric Hylton, commissioner of the agency’s Small Business and Self-Employed Division, said Thursday that a 40% increase in employees authorized for remote work is one example of how the IRS has turned a crisis into an opportunity to change things.

  • “Ultimately, that’s going to be a paradigm shift for us as we move forward,” Hylton said on a webinar hosted by the NYU School of Professional Studies.
  • The IRS is in the process of reopening facilities across the country that were shuttered as a result of the pandemic.
  • So far the return-to-work orders only apply to people who can’t do their jobs from home. The agency has accumulated a massive backlog of unopened mail—including paper tax returns—and is fast approaching the July 15 tax filing deadline.

To contact the reporter on this story: Allyson Versprille in Washington at aversprille@bloombergtax.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Patrick Ambrosio at pambrosio@bloombergtax.com; Colleen Murphy at cmurphy@bloombergtax.com

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