Thursday, October 28, 2010
While the IRS received about 132 million individual income tax returns and issued approximately 101 million refunds totaling $291.7 billion through May 28, 2010, those returns contained nearly 23.7 million errors, an increase of 7.1% over the same period last year. TIGTA identified inadequate controls and incomplete and inaccurate programming resulting in 125,762 individuals receiving nearly $111.4 million in erroneous Recovery Act-related tax benefits, including:
- 10,581 individuals claiming $65.6 million in erroneous First-Time Homebuyer Credits (IRS prevented 2,363 of them from receiving some $11.3 million in credits);
- 109,665 individuals erroneously received $29.7 million in Making Work Pay and Government Retiree Credits;
- 5,345 individuals erroneously claimed $15.6 million in plug-in electric vehicle credits; and
- 171 individuals claimed $453,220 in erroneous non-business energy property credits.
TIGTA also identified 2,933 individuals with more than $95.8 million in Qualified Motor Vehicle Tax deductions on individual income tax returns (Form 1040, Schedule A) that exceeded the dollar amount the IRS uses to identify a potentially erroneous claim. The IRS has not developed a process to identify these potentially erroneous claims on Schedule A.
“During the 2010 Filing Season, the IRS timely processed individual income tax returns and issued refunds on schedule,” said J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. “However, while the IRS did a good job overall, improvements are needed to prevent erroneous claims for credits and deductions.”