IRS eases e-filing rules

Filing income taxes online may become easier.

The Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury Department temporarily lifted some regulations so that people can file tax returns online more easily. The agencies also proposed the changes as revised final rules.

The proposed changes would eliminate requirements such as having taxpayers sign transaction statements and include them with their federal income tax returns.

“The requirement that the taxpayer sign the statement is an impediment to e-filing and superfluous,” the Federal Register notices states in today’s issue.

The rules being lifted “simplify, clarify or eliminate reporting burdens,” the notice states.

Some exisiting rules also create impediments that prevent corporate taxpayers from submitting tax statements as part of an e-filed tax return.

During the 2006 filing season, taxpayers electronically filed 70 million tax returns. About 18 percent of taxpayers used home computers to file, according to the IRS. E-filing has been increasing steadily in recent years.

The temporary regulations took effect May 30 and are available for public comment. The Office of Management and Budget is expected to accept the rule changes.

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