When clients come to Bill Nemeth
, they have one wish: Please make it go away.
"It," in this case, is a problem with the Internal Revenue Service
Nemeth makes his living representing people before the IRS: He's an enrolled agent, the highest credential the IRS awards.
helps makes nasty tax things - fines, penalties, liens - go away.
He's on the phone with the IRS every day.
But these days, he's
mostly on hold.
"I was on hold for an hour and a half last night," he
gets to use the practitioner priority line, which puts him ahead of regular taxpayers who just want to know what form they have to file for reporting a capital gain from a stock loss. (That would be Schedule D.) Nemeth
wait time used to be 15 minutes or so.
And for some people, the IRS's woes mean that basic mistakes in filing could ultimately become big costs that involve fines, penalties, liens - and hiring people like Bill Nemeth
IRS customer service has been struggling for the past three years, and the cause is fairly simple: Congress has consistently cut its budget.
"Congress doesn't like the IRS
says, and Congress is unlikely to get much blowback when it cuts the not exactly beloved agency's budget.
"The letters are not written for civilians," Nemeth