I got the following longish comment on a recent article covering tax season delays/frustrations, from someone who may have worked at the IRS to retort all the negativity folks are putting out there this tax season due to extended delays with refund payments and processing beyond normal timelines.
Interesting to see how government (IRS?) workers see the situation. So to provide a balanced view, I put the comment below [with some minor grammatical corrections] for my readers to peruse. Leave a comment below with your thoughts.
Subject: In response to all those people complaining about tax refund delays
So just imagine how many workers at the IRS feels the same way. System changed from desktop to laptops when COVID-19 hit. People failed to believe that during shutdown 90% of staff, where at home during shutdown as well. Trying to keep themselves and their families safe.
In 2020 IRS had almost 50% of staff who had 30 years or more with the federal government. Eligibility for retirement created biggest [staffing retention] issue. COVID-19 made most retirement eligible workers hop on train and get out investments and their pensions so they could have money on hand PRE-vaccination and move back to local homes.
So that left a few millennials to pick up the slack. Stimulus this, Balance this, Refund this, Verify My Identity this, Earned income credit this, Advance child tax credit that…. the list goes on and new soft ware for laptops to learn while waiting for your Employers who has not submitted W-2 documents to verify actual wage earnings was paid to your SSN, before releasing a year of mortgage payment refunds.
Please don’t forget about the millions of people who have never filed or went decades without filing a single tax return, they only wanted the free stimuli, so needed to become authenticated people again to make sure Identity Theft was not occurring.
Tax transcripts needed for PPP loans other SBA help or House buying. Everyone in US of A was on pandemic unemployment in 2020 so $10,200 free dollars after March needed adjusting which means the entire tax return and all other lines afterwards have to be adjusted just so the taxpaying citizens could have more means of finances to work with through all of our tough time living.
People sure want to do psychotherapy on telephone lines (with a live agent/person) too because COVID-19 affected them so greatly.
I could go on and on about our great loving tax paying citizens we claim in our souls to be…. but as soon as the employee number is read out disgruntled human would beat down on the newbie on the phone because you cant be touched and they are to me (paid the lowest on the GS scale).
Now you have the PTSD and calling in sick everyday or could not tolerate there fellow citizens cussing them out over the phone 9 hrs a day/ 5days a week when to keep a job standards are based on quantity and quality if you want a telephone and desk seat next year.
So keeping up the pace and all the old timers at home. Retirement now zoom, skype etc… has to train the newbie on knowing tax laws, policy, code etc… forced to learn a job bible bigger than the one on your night stand from the man above or whoever rocks your heart.
Then the shockwave, the people at who are at home sleeping in are making twice as much money weekly than your bi-weekly check. But you have to drive to work to read the letters that people will write, the same dang letter 30 times in 30 days, which ultimately means this created back log and semi trucks of mail, or the mail people refusing to deal with reading handwriting of people who decided to use a snakes back to cuss you out, for not returning a timely response to one of the other 49 letters they mailed out to the closed local office.
Why would you mail your letters to an office where it says closed. COVID-19 hits one person, whole office has the legal right to quarantine. Taxpayers refuse to mail their response back to the return address and wont spend the extra change to make sure that IRS received the letter at the processing service center where it might be people working.
Not the Tax center with the lights off, no one is there to retrieve or open your mail or tax return. I couldn’t do what the IRS phone customer representatives tolerate on the phone. Morale is extremely low for the worker who is struggling mentally as well and they are spending entire lunch breaks looking for a new job. Its bad.
Its no ones fault. Being nice goes a long way because if they don’t hit a keystroke to help its because you broke their spirit or you was last straw and you didn’t even know they walked away from keyboard.
Love and patience will be key or USAjobs.gov and apply to help. Sorry for grammatical errors but no one is happy on the listening or receiving line of the phone and yet again millennials are sensitive.
IRS Face to Face Worker, Your Last Stop.