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IRS Tax Stats DispatchApril 18, 2024

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Issue Number:    2024 – 04

Inside This Issue


IRS releases 2023 Data Book describing agency’s transformation through statistics


WASHINGTON —The Internal Revenue Service today issued its annual Data Book detailing the agency’s activities during fiscal year 2023 (Oct. 1, 2022 – Sept. 30, 2023), including revenue collected and tax returns processed.

For FY 2023, the IRS collected approximately $4.7 trillion, or about 96 percent of the funding that supports the federal government’s operations — to fund everything from education to national defense.

During FY 2023, the IRS processed more than 271.4 million tax returns and other forms, including more than 163.1 million individual income tax returns.

Beyond statistics, the 2023 Data Book reflects the initial impacts of the historic long-term funding provided under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) of 2022 to transform the IRS and modernize how the agency serves the American people.

“This once-in-a-generation funding opportunity provided by the IRA is an investment in the transformation of the IRS and an investment in the financial future of our nation,” IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel wrote in the Data Book introduction. “The effects of this IRA funding — to hire more IRS employees and modernize the agency’s technology and systems to provide better service to the American people — started showing up in the 2023 tax season. And that progress has accelerated into 2024.”

In FY 2023, with new phone assistors hired through IRA funding, IRS employees answered nearly 27.3 million phone calls — a 25% increase from FY 2022. The IRS opened or reopened more than 50 Taxpayer Assistance Centers in FY 2023 that were closed during the pandemic. The IRS had more than 1.6 million contacts at 363 centers across the nation in FY 2023 to provide more in-person help to taxpayers – up 18% from FY 2022.

These increases in taxpayer assistance – on the phones, in person and on IRS.gov – are continuing in 2024, as highlighted earlier this week. The IRA funding is already making a difference for taxpayers, Werfel said — from shorter wait times for IRS telephone help, to more in-person and online resources for taxpayers, to the IRS’s free Direct File pilot tax filing program launched for 2024 in 12 states.

And the IRS has increased its enforcement and collections efforts on high wealth non-filers and those who underreport their tax liability through complex schemes. In FY 2023, there was no increase in audits of tax returns for taxpayers making under $400,000 per year.

After several challenging pandemic years, the IRS had a successful filing season in 2023, with the addition of 5,800 new employees hired to provide taxpayer service. Overall, the IRS’s workforce grew 5% in FY 2023.

Data highlights

The IRS issued $659 million in refunds to taxpayers during FY 2023 — a 2.7% increase over FY 2022.

In FY 2023, the IRS closed 582,944 tax return audits, resulting in $31.9 billion in recommended additional tax.

For all returns filed for Tax Years 2013 through 2021, the IRS examined 0.44% of individual returns filed and 0.74% of corporation returns filed, through the end of FY 2023.

The IRS has examined the returns of 8.7% of taxpayers filing individual returns reporting total positive income of $10 million or more for Tax Years 2013 through 2021, as of the end of FY 2023.

The IRS website had more than 880.9 million visits in FY 2023, including more than 303.1 million inquiries on its “Where’s My Refund?” online tool that enables taxpayers to check the status of their tax refund.

Some new features in the 2023 Data Book include two new tables from IRS’s Large Business & International Division focused on tax certainty programs. The Advance Pricing Agreement and Compliance Assurance Programs provide businesses the opportunity to work with the IRS to ensure tax compliance prior to filing, which benefits both businesses and the government.

The 2023 Data Book also features added information on telephone level of service with automation called LOS(A), and a Trust Score based on Performance.gov metrics.

To learn more details, view the complete 2023 Data Book online.

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