IRS Penalty Assessments on the Rise

By Bryan C. Skarlatos
Journal of Tax Practice & Procedure
October - November 2011 Edition

The number of accuracy related penalties assessed by the IRS under Internal Revenue Code1 (the "CODE") Sec. 6662 has risen dramatically over the past five years. According to the IRS Data Book Published on the IRS website,2 the number of accuracy-related penalties assessed against individuals has risen from 58,366 in 2005 to 469,321 in 2010, a more than an 800-percent increase. Assessments against corporations have risen dramatically as well, from 1,342 in 2005 to 3,640 in 2010, a 270-percent increase. What is the reason behind this increase; are there more bad taxpayers or is the IRS just getting more aggressive about assessing penalties?

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