Treasury Proposes to Repeal 298 Unnecessary, Obsolete Regulations (NPRM REG-132197-17)

The Treasury Department has proposed repealing 298 regulations. According to the Treasury, the targeted rules are unnecessary, duplicative or obsolete. In addition, the Treasury proposes to amend another 79 regulations to reflect the repeal.


The Treasury began reviewing IRS regulations in response to two Executive Orders (EO) issued in 2017. The first EO directed agencies to establish a Regulatory Reform Task Force. In addition, the EO directed each task force to review existing regulations to determine which rules were outdated, unnecessary or ineffective.

The second EO directed the Treasury to review all significant tax regulations issued on or after January 1, 2016. Accordingly, the Treasury identified eight regulations that needed to be revised or withdrawn. Thereafter, the Treasury issued a second report, which noted that the IRS Office of Chief Counsel had identified over 200 regulations for potential repeal.

Unnecessary, Obsolete Regulations

The IRS proposes to repeal three types of regulations:

  1. Regulations interpreting Code provisions that have been repealed;
  2. Regulations interpreting significantly revised Code provisions that do not reflect the revisions; and
  3. Regulations that are no longer applicable.

Moreover, these regulations’ removal is unrelated to the substance of rules they contain. Therefore, there is no negative inference regarding the stated rules. The IRS proposes to remove these regulations from the CFR solely because they have no current or future applicability. In addition, the IRS’s repeal of these regulations is not intended to alter any nonregulatory guidance that cites to or relies upon them.

Further, the Treasury proposes to amend 79 existing regulations to remove cross-references to the 298 repealed regulations. According to the Treasury, these amendments will streamline and reduce the volume of regulations taxpayers need to review and increase clarity of the tax law.

These regulations will be repealed as of the date the Treasury decision adopting these proposals is published in the Federal Register.

Comments Requested

Written or electronic comments and requests for a public hearing must be received by May 14, 2018. Comments should be mailed to: CC:PA:LPD:PR (REG-132197-17), Room 5203, Internal Revenue Service, P.O. Box 7604, Ben Franklin Station, Washington, D.C. 20044. Also, submissions may be hand-delivered between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. to CC:PA:LPD:PR (REG-132197-17), Courier’s Desk, Internal Revenue Service, 1111 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C., or sent via the Federal eRulemaking Portal at (REG-132197-17).

Treasury Department News Release, TDNR SM-0287

Proposed Regulations, NPRM REG-132197-17

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