A group of 141 Republican lawmakers led by Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) today wrote to congressional leaders, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Charles Rettig to express concern over a controversial proposal to expand mandatory IRS reporting on bank account transactions. The provision would require financial institutions report on all customers with gross inflows and outflows above a de minimis level of $600 in an effort to crack down on tax avoidance.
The lawmakers echoed concerns previously raised by ABA, including that it could leave Americans’ personal financial data vulnerable to cyberattacks and could also undermine public trust in banks and hinder progress toward promoting financial inclusion. “Considering the IRS experiences 1.4 billion cyberattacks annually and has experienced multiple data breaches, we should not give this agency additional sensitive data to manage,” they wrote. “Additionally, privacy is one of the primary reasons individuals choose not to open bank accounts. This overreaching proposal, if adopted, would further exacerbate banked/unbanked/underbanked divides.”
While the provision was not included in initial versions of the spending bill, ABA continues calling on bankers and their customers to urge their representatives to keep the provision out of the legislation as it moves through Congress. To help engage bank customers on this issue, ABA has created sample language for customer communications and social media posts banks can use.