The IRS unveiled its “People First Initiative” on March 25, 2020, which provides immediate relief provisions for taxpayers due to the recent COVID-19 pandemic:

  1. Installment payments. For taxpayers with an existing installment agreement, the IRS is suspending installment payments during the suspension period. Furthermore, the IRS will not default any installment agreements during the suspension period.
  2. Revenue Officer levies. Field revenue officers will not initiate liens and levies, nor seize any personal residences, during the suspension period.
  3. Automated Collection System (ACS) levies. The IRS will not issue new automatic, systemic liens and levies during the suspension period.
  4. Passports at risk? The IRS will not revoke anyone’s passport or deny a passport application to taxpayers who are “seriously delinquent” (i.e. owe more than $52,000 in taxes) during the suspension period.
  5. No new IRS audits. During the suspension period, the IRS generally will not start new field, office and correspondence audits. Nor will it conduct in-person meetings with taxpayers under examination.
  6. Appeals conferences. During the suspension period, all appeals conferences will be held by telephone and not in person (face-to-face).
  7. CAUTION.  In all events, the IRS will continue to take actions necessary to protect the statute of limitations. All this means is that practitioners can expect longer wait times in seeking help from the practitioner priority service (PPS).