Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

IRS Program Helps Find Missing Taxpayers

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

IRS Program Helps Find Missing Taxpayers

Article excerpt

Where can one turn when an executor can't find an heir or when a pension plan administrator can't find a plan participant? The Internal Revenue Service's letter-forwarding program may be a place to start.

The IRS announced in revenue procedure 94-22 it would forward letters to missing persons if doing so served a "humane purpose." Letters from one family member seeking to reunite with another, from an organization that controls assets due a taxpayer or a pension plan administrator or sponsor attempting to locate a missing plan participant fall into this category. The program is open to individuals, companies and organizations as well as to state and federal agencies.

The IRS will not assist in tracing family trees, nor will it forward letters seeking reparation. It will not disclose to a requester any confidential tax information, such as an address, or even the fact that an address exists in its files.

Here's how the program works: A requester submits these items to the Disclosure Office at the IRS district office in which the requester resides:

* The letter to be forwarded.

* A written statement explaining the need for the mailing.

* The missing person's Social Security number. (If none is furnished, a request cannot be processed. …

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