In Unprecedented Conditions, Neal, Pascrell Urgently Demand IRS Extend 2021 Tax Filing Season

Mar 8, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC— Today, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard E. Neal (D-MA) and Oversight Subcommittee Chairman Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ) called on the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to extend the 2021 tax filing season, as the pandemic continues to impose titanic strain on the agency and on taxpayers. As of the end of February, the number of returns filed was down by nearly 25 percent from last year at the same time, and the number of returns processed by the IRS was down by 31 percent. Further, only 27 percent of telephone calls to the IRS are being answered, indicating that approximately 3 out of every 4 taxpayers trying to reach the IRS are unable to get help. 

“We stand in the midst of the most important tax filing season in recent memory, and taxpayers cannot get the help they need from the IRS,” said Chairmen Neal and Pascrell. “Returns received by the IRS have fallen significantly behind last year’s numbers. On top of all that, once it is signed into law, the American Rescue Plan will change the tax laws applicable to unemployment benefits received in 2020 and reported on returns filed during this filing season. Taxpayers need more time to file accurate returns and get their questions answered by the IRS.

The Chairmen continued: “Last year, the tax filing season was extended by three months to July 15, 2020. We want to remind the IRS that many Americans continue to face the same health and economic challenges that necessitated an extension last year. Facing enormous strain and anxiety, taxpayers need flexibility now. We demand that the IRS announce an extension as soon as possible.”