IRS offers extra tax refunds to illegals, rewarding immigrants granted amnesty by Obama

 John Koskinen
IRS Commissioner John Koskinen / Source: The Washington Times

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told Senators on Capitol Hill Tuesday that illegal immigrants granted amnesty by President Obama’s executive actions will be eligible for extra tax refunds for those years they worked here illegally.

Crime pays after all.

An estimated 4 million illegals, who have been granted deferred action from prosecution, could rake in billions of dollars in refunds by claiming Earned Income Tax Credits on amended tax returns going back up to three years after being granted new Social Security numbers, the Washington Times reported.

“This is the problem you get into,” said Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa. “The IRS’s interpretation of the EITC eligibility requirements undermines congressional policy for not rewarding those working illegally in the United States.”

The Times reported:

The loophole stems from the way the IRS handles illegal immigrants. While the immigrants are not authorized to work in the U.S. legally, the IRS still wants to be paid taxes on the earnings of those who do work, and so it has issued millions of Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers, or ITINs, to illegal immigrants, enabling them to pay up.

Some tax credits are only eligible to those with a valid Social Security number. Those who get valid numbers, however, can go back and claim them.

If the illegals make their filings on or before April 15, they can amend tax returns going back to 2011.

Allowing illegals to claim the Earned Income Tax Credit isn’t the only IRS provision coming under fire. “The IRS already pays out billions of dollars a year to illegal immigrants under a program known as the additional child tax credit,” the Times reported.

Because the law implementing the credit was vaguely drafted, the IRS is giving illegal immigrants the benefit of the doubt.

When’s the last time the IRS ever erred on the side of the taxpayer?

The Times reported:

Backers argue that the children claimed for the child tax credit are likely U.S. citizens, even if their parents are here illegally, and so it would be unfair to strip the money.

In 2010, the government paid out $4.2 billion to illegal immigrants who claimed the child tax credit, the IRS’s inspector general found.

The children may indeed be U.S. citizens, but the children aren’t the ones claiming the credit — the parents, who arrived and worked here illegally are, and should be afforded no special privileges.

The IRS website says taxpayers have until April 15 this year to file back to 2011 claiming tax credits they didn’t ask for in their previous returns, and have until April 15, 2016, to claim tax credits from 2012.

Mr. Grassley asked Mr. Koskinen to go back and revisit his agency’s interpretation of the laws.

The Obama administration says up to 4 million illegal immigrants could earn “deferred action,” or a stay of deportation and work permits that would accompany it. It’s uncertain how many of those were paying taxes using ITINs, and thus could be eligible to claim the EITC.

The EITC isn’t the only tax credit to be ensnared in the immigration debate. The IRS already pays out billions of dollars a year to illegal immigrants under a program known as the additional child tax credit.

The IRS says the law is vague on who is eligible for the child credit, so to be on the safe side they pay it out to illegal immigrants.

Backers argue that the children claimed for the child tax credit are likely U.S. citizens, even if their parents are here illegally, and so it would be unfair to strip the money.
In 2010, the government paid out $4.2 billion to illegal immigrants who claimed the child tax credit, the IRS’s inspector general found.

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