While the IRS is not closed, most of the staff have been sent home. Other than a few departments, not a lot is functioning right now.
Currently still working are: most of the electronic services, including the acceptance of E-Filed Returns, the electronic Transcript Delivery System (as long as we already have a Power of Attorney for you on file), and the Get Transcript for individuals that have an account set-up, or are able to meet the verification requirements (which includes having a cell phone reported in your name). There are only two departments that are staffed: ACS (Automated Collections Service), this is the department that sends those annoying collection notices, and the local Tax Payer Advocates, who are working from home.
On the bright side, most collections matters are currently on hold until July 15th. However, if you have a garnishment in place or an automated payment plan, these have not been affected by the IRS shutdown. If you have one of these and you are experiencing a hardship due to COVID-19, you will need to contact your employer or bank about suspending the payment until July 15th.
The IRS is not processing any paper returns, paper forms or mail. These things are just piling up and with any luck will be processed when employees return to work. This means we, as tax professionals, can’t submit new Powers of Attorney and get information to help taxpayers get compliant. Banks can’t get verification of taxes and payments when processing mortgage applications and those waiting for answers to tax problems and IRS correspondence will just have to wait.
I also may mean some Economic Disaster payments are delayed for those that choose to submit paper returns.
The one thing you can depend on is that we are working and happy to assist you should you need help.