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IRS Loosens Email, E-Signature Policies in Response to Virus

March 30, 2020, 11:45 PM

The IRS is loosening its email and electronic signature polices to help the agency, as well as taxpayers and their advisers, complete tasks remotely during the new coronavirus pandemic.

The agency Monday said, effective immediately, it will begin temporarily accepting scanned or photographed images of signatures and digital signatures on certain documents related to tax assessment and collection. The agency is also allowing employees to accept documents via email and to transmit them to taxpayers using SecureZip or other secure messaging platforms.

  • The temporary changes will allow the IRS to continue executing “mission-critical duties” during the virus outbreak, the agency said.
  • The new policies were outlined in a March 27 internal IRS memo obtained by Bloomberg Tax.
  • Documents covered by the temporary policy include extensions of statute of limitations on tax assessment or collection, waivers of tax deficiency notices and consents to assessment, closing agreements, and any other statements or forms needing the signature of a taxpayer or representative traditionally collected by the IRS outside of standard filing procedures.

To contact the reporter on this story: Allyson Versprille in Washington at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Patrick Ambrosio at; Yuri Nagano at

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