Basic (09-05)

GN 03312.045 Federal Tax Administration

A. Policy

1. When Disclosure Is Permitted

SSA may disclose tax and non-tax return information to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) when the information is needed to investigate Federal tax laws, or for general tax administration as defined in the Internal Revenue Code.

The IRS must furnish the number holder's SSN and name, or the name along with sufficient identifying information to enable SSA to locate an SSN. Neither an individual’s name nor any other information should be disclosed if IRS furnishes only an SSN.

NOTE: SSA provides IRS with an extract of all SSN records for tax administration purposes. Therefore, if the IRS submits a request to a field office (FO) for a copy of an individual’s Form SS-5 or Numident and indicates that it is an emergency situation, the information may be disclosed by the FO. If there is no indication of a emergency, contact the regional Privacy Act Coordinator for advice.

2. Valid Requests

To be valid, a request from IRS must:

  • Be in writing on IRS letterhead,

  • Be signed by an official of the IRS central office or a local field office (e.g., a revenue officer or supervisory or management official),

  • Indicate that the purpose is for a civil or criminal investigation in connection with Federal tax administration, and

  • State specifically what information is needed. If it is not clear what information IRS needs, the request should be returned to them for clarification.

B. Procedure

Although any SSA component may disclose information to IRS, the exchange of information is normally performed by a computer interface program. When IRS offices have questions which cannot be answered by the interface, they should be referred to the Office of Public Disclosure, Office of the General Counsel, through the component Privacy Act Coordinator.

A field office (FO) may furnish information (including Numidents) in response to a written request from IRS local offices or Service Centers in an emergency situation (such as a pending IRS court case). Otherwise, IRS agents should be instructed to follow their office's established procedure for routing requests to SSA Central Office.

An FO should normally accept requests for information about only one individual. In certain circumstances, an FO may accept a case involving a few taxpayers. Volume requests involving earnings records should be routed to OCO, and requests involving benefit data should be routed to the servicing PSC. FO personl may only provide SSN match/no match information IRS agents.

IRS requests for earnings information should be directed to:

Social Security Administration
Division of Earnings Records Operations
P.O. Box 33003
Baltimore, Maryland 21290-3003

IRS requests for non-earnings information should be directed to:

Social Security Administration
Office of Public Disclosure
3-A-6 Operations Building
6401 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, Maryland 21235-6401

IRS agents should also be advised to refer to their IRS Manual Section

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GN 03312.045 - Federal Tax Administration - 06/24/2008
Batch run: 07/01/2008