Joe Biden promised, “Help is on the way!” with his $1.9 trillion “American Rescue Plan”. But for some of our country’s senior citizens, his “help” is bringing more harm than good.
From the Detroit Free Press:
IRS processing centers shut down early in the pandemic last year. Piles of paperwork sat untouched for months in truck trailers. The IRS last year acknowledged delays involving the filing of paper returns as a result of what it calls “COVID-19 mail processing delays.”
The delays aren’t just limited to paper returns, though, as tax preparers and taxpayers told the Free Press that they e-filed and still couldn’t get their situations resolved last year, either.
Some who filed electronically voiced frustration about their missing tax refunds from their 2019 tax returns, too.
This has affected Phyllis Ault particularly hard, and she reached out to me with her story.
Mrs. Ault and her husband have been married for 40 years, and always file jointly. Because she owed money to the IRS and did not want to supply her banking information, she chose to paper file her 2019 tax return.
Because of the shutdowns from the pandemic, her return, along with millions of others, has still not been processed. Because other agencies reliant upon that tax information do not have it, they cannot process Mrs. Ault’s government-subsidized benefits. One of those agencies: Obamacare insurance. Mrs. Ault’s medical coverage is now in jeopardy because of the IRS’ backlog in processing returns.
“I was contacted by Health insurance marketplace aka Obama care that there is no status of a 2019 reconciliation 1095a filed in 2019 tax return. With that not being filed I am at jeopardy of losing my insurance tax credit of $1231 monthly which is $14772(?) annually. When I was able to get thru to IRS on 11/5/20 I was told that there had been no one working in [the] building and that they have no idea when my return would be processed let alone where it was at; but they could verify my $47 check was cashed 6/29/20 (IRS filing was extended to 7/15/20 due to plandemic).
“They hope to catch up by March when the health insurance market place will review again. She added they should know the IRS is behind.”
Mrs. Ault and her husband are both retired, and live in a remote area in Rim County, Arizona. They are dependent on not only the subsidies, but the stimulus money promised to them by Biden. This has also been stymied because of the IRS’ failure to process their 2019 return.
“The 2nd benefit the IRS has stopped paying is my stimulus money. My husband and I are going on 40 years of marriage and file jointly. Since we don’t file direct deposit (refuse to give IRS my banking info) any refunds or stimulus money is usually mailed to us. we got our first stimulus check in mail jointly for $2400. The 2nd stimulus just came in 2 weeks ago [this was early February] to my husband as an individual for $600. I am either divorced or dead now in the eyes of the IRS, I can’t reach them anymore to find out.”
Mrs. Ault volunteers at her local senior center, and several of the members have also experienced issues with either non-payment of the Biden stimulus or being shorted on the amount promised. According to the Whitehouse.gov website, couples filing jointly should each receive a payment of $1,400 if they made under $75,000 annually, or were Social Security recipients.
A William Kern said,
Yep. Pat [wife] got $600 card but I didn’t and we been filling taxes jointly for about 57 years. The first check the governor sent to people came in both our names. I know other people who didn’t get the December one to. Walt who lives up here in the summer got 3 $600 cards from the government in December. LOL. IRS doesn’t know what they are doing. Convicted Felons are getting them.
With the corruption surrounding any payments that are COVID-related, Mr. Kern may not be off the mark.
But it is apparent the IRS is having difficulty walking and chewing gum at the same time. While they have been focused on managing the stimulus payments, their primary work of processing returns and distributing refunds has fallen by the wayside.
According to the Detroit Free Press, the IRS “system” even sent notices to taxpayers alerting them they still had not filed for 2019:
The confusion has continued into 2021. In early February, the IRS sent out notices to about 260,000 taxpayers nationwide that claimed that the people had not yet filed their 2019 tax return.
One small problem? Many of those taxpayers did file their 2019 tax returns promptly last year, but the IRS has not yet processed them.
Oops. Later, the IRS issued a statement that essentially said don’t panic or respond to the CP59 notice, if you did file a 2019 return.
The statement from the IRS website:
February 18, 2021
Earlier this month, the IRS issued notices to approximately 260,000 taxpayers stating they haven’t filed their 2019 federal tax return. These notices, referred to as CP59 notices, are issued yearly to identified taxpayers who have failed to file a tax return that was due the prior calendar year (Tax Year 2019). Due to pandemic related shutdowns, the IRS has not completed processing all 2019 returns at this time. Therefore, the CP59 notices should not have been sent because some portion of the recipients may actually have filed a return that is still being processed. People who filed their 2019 return but nevertheless received the CP59 notice, can disregard the letter and do not need to take any action. There is no need to call or respond to the CP59 notice because the IRS continues to process 2019 tax returns as quickly as possible. The IRS regrets any confusion caused by this mailing.
The IRS encourages those who have yet to file their 2019 return to promptly do so.
Because the IRS may not have time to process your return, but when they do, they’ll tack on those interests and penalties. When they owe you money, they can take all the time they need. When you owe them money? Better pay up quickly or accrue and be penalized. This is an example of how government doesn’t work for you. As if you need any reminders.
The Aults, The Kerns, and others are people on fixed incomes who, beyond retirement savings (if that), have no means to generate income.
So, Joe, you need to help the IRS get it together, so your “help” can get to the people who desperately need it.