The annual shutdown over Columbus Day weekend last year by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of its Modernized e-File program caused an outcry of complaints from American Institute of CPAs’ (AICPA) members, who needed to file tax returns by the October 15 filing deadline for clients who had filed extensions earlier in the year. Shutting down the Modernized e-File program was necessary in order to perform information technology system updates, according to the IRS.
The AICPA voiced its members’ concerns about the timing of the shutdown to IRS officials who responded by restricting this year’s closure so that the impact would be less severe.
In announcing the shutdown schedule on October 2 in the Service’s e-News for Tax Professionals, the IRS stated, “Following concerns from the tax professional community, the IRS has modified its Columbus Day power outage to minimize the impact of this critical maintenance period as much as possible. This year, the Columbus Day weekend maintenance period will not affect the Modernized e-File operation, a change from previous years…The IRS appreciates the feedback it has received regarding the Columbus Day period, and it has tried to reduce the impact of this outage as much as possible while balancing the need for timely system updates during a critical period.”
The AICPA was pleased that the IRS acted in such a positive way to the objections it heard and thanks the IRS for its effort to better serve taxpayers and the tax preparer community.