Community members reaching out to local tax services as government shutdown looms

Community members reaching out to local tax services as government shutdown looms

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Millions of Americans who are owed money could see delayed payouts of tax refunds after an extended fight between President Donald Trump and Democratic Congressional leaders to fund the government.

In the second week of the partial government shutdown, the IRS is among the federal agencies affected. During a full shutdown, the IRS typically does not perform audits, pay refunds or offer assistance to taxpayers, especially outside of the filing season.

The agency is currently operating with fewer than 10,000 federal employees due this being a partial shutdown.

Gwennetta Wright, the owner of Xpert Tax Service in Columbus, says they have received a number of calls from concerned taxpayers on what happens next.

"A lot of people are worried that because the government is shut down that their refund is probably going to be delayed. It could have been delayed anyway with so many changes with the new tax reform. As of today, the IRS has not released an official acceptance day of when they'll start receiving returns,” says Wright.

Some changes to the tax system include lower tax rates and less being taken out of paychecks, which could result in larger paychecks for some. The child tax credit has increased from $1,000 to $2,000.

"Even though the government is shut down. They're still working on this filing season,” says Wright.

Tax filing season usually begins in mid-January. If the shutdown is resolved by then it may have little lasting impact on taxpayers.

The IRS has yet to announce when individuals and businesses can begin submitting their income tax returns.

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