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How will the government shutdown impact your 2018 tax filings?

The United States is currently entering the third week of a partial government shutdown. As the shutdown continues without an apparent end in sight, taxpayers are likely voicing concerns about how the shutdown will impact their taxes.

The truth is the shutdown will impact tax returns. The extent of the impact will depend on the length of the shutdown. At this time, two impacts to note include:

The shutdown closed the IRS office. The partial shutdown sent home approximately 90 percent of the workforce for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). What does this mean? Although 10 percent of the IRS staff remains to ensure necessary operations continue, taxpayers with questions about their filings will not get answers from the IRS office. This could mean taxpayers need to look elsewhere or wait until the shutdown ends.

Processing of 2018 tax returns. The White House recently issued a statement claiming the IRS will process tax returns as usual despite the shutdown. As such, in theory the IRS should provide refunds in a timely manner. However, it is important to note that the partial government shutdown, the reduced workforce within the IRS due to cutbacks along with the new tax law may add up to a trifecta that results and postponed tax refunds.

Due to these issues, it is wise for taxpayers to closely review their tax refunds. Legal resolutions are available if your individual or business tax refund was not paid or if the IRS provided a refund that was below the expected amount. An attorney experienced in refund-related lawsuits can review your case and provide guidance on the best course of action.

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