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Keep your Eye on the Prize: IRS Whistleblower Claims and Judicial Review Process

February 01, 2022

On January 12, 2022, the National Taxpayer Advocate (Advocate) released the  2021 Annual Report to Congress, stating that calendar year 2021 was "the most challenging year taxpayers and tax professionals have ever experienced." IR-2022-11. Notably, one category appearing for the first time on the Advocate’s “Most Litigated Issues” list is “whistleblower award determinations” under I.R.C. Section 7623(b)(1). The Advocate identified 12 opinions issued in the Tax Court where taxpayers challenged an IRS determination on issuing whistleblower awards between June 1, 2020, and May 31, 2021. In FY 2020, the Whistleblower Office made 169 awards to whistleblowers totaling more than $86 million, which included 30 awards under I.R.C. Section 7623(b)IRS Pub. 5241, Fiscal Year 2020 Annual Report IRS Whistleblower Office (Dec. 2020).

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