IRS News Release  
January 24, 1996

IRS Seeks Taxpayer Input on
Easing Recordkeeping Burden

WASHINGTON - The Internal Revenue Service today proposed procedures that would eliminate requirements that taxpayers keep paper records and allow an electronic imaging system to be used instead. The IRS is soliciting public comment on the proposal, which was announced earlier this month as part of the expanded Taxpayer Bill of Rights.

"We know that many taxpayers are as anxious to eliminate paper as we are," said IRS Commissioner Margaret Milner Richardson in announcing the proposed procedures. "As an agency that handles two billion pieces of paper a year, we are acutely aware of the advantages of computer storage."

The proposed procedures set forth certain requirements that imaging systems would have to meet to qualify as books and records under the Internal Revenue Code. The requirements are broadly written as operational capabilities, not technical specifications for hardware or software.

Taxpayers maintaining imaging systems in accordance with the procedures would not have to keep hardcopy documents as a backup, thus saving storage costs.

Notice 96-9, containing the proposed procedures, will appear in Internal Revenue Bulletin 1996-7, dated February 12, 1996.

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