In a relatively quiet move reported in The Wall Street Journal on May 26, the IRS is now requiring companies being audited to turn over exact copies of the electronic records kept in their business software programs.
Small business groups have begun to fight back against this practice. Reason: Unlike corporate heavyweights with complex and sophisticated accounting systems, small business owners often use off-the-shelf software programs like Intuit’s QuickBooks or Sage Group’s Peachtree. Thus, they can’t limit the information going to the IRS, which they fear could lead to “fishing expeditions.”
In a recent letter to the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), the IRS said its request for complete software files is part of its efforts to modernize.