Final Regulations Clarifying Contractor’s Ability to Participate in Summons Interview Issued (T.D. 9778)

CCH Tax Day Report

The IRS has finalized previously issued temporary regulations (T.D. 9669, I.R.B. 2014-28, 103) that permit the full participation in a summons interview of persons with whom the IRS or the Office of Chief Counsel contracts for services under Code Sec. 6103(n). The IRS officers and employees remain responsible for issuing summonses and developing and conduction examinations.

Full participation includes receiving, examining and using summoned books, papers, records, or other data. The temporary regulations had used the term, review instead of examine in describing full participation. This revision also clarifies that the regulations do not permit contractors to direct examinations of a taxpayer’s return. Contractors may be present during summons interviews, question the person providing testimony under oath and may ask a summoned person’s representative to clarify an objection or an assertion of privilege.

All inherently governmental functions, such as deciding whether to issue a summons, deciding whom to summon, what information must be produced or who will be required to testify, and issuing the summons will be performed by an IRS officer or employee. Further, any contractor that the IRS authorizes to ask questions of summoned witnesses testifying under oath must do so in the presence and under the guidance of an IRS officer or employee.

T.D. 9778, 2016FED ¶47,036

T.D. 9778, FINH ¶43,154

Other References:

Code Sec. 7602

CCH Reference – 2016FED ¶42,822

CCH Reference – FINH ¶22,640

Tax Research Consultant

CCH Reference – TRC IRS: 21,056

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