IRS experiences technical difficulties on last day to file taxes

The Internal Revenue Service’s electronic system that many people use to file their taxes online had a partial failure on Tuesday, the last day American can file their taxes.

The issue could make it harder for millions of Americans trying to file before the midnight deadline.

"On my way over here this morning, I was told a number of systems are unavailable at the moment," IRS Acting Commissioner David Kautter told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Tuesday. "We are working to resolve the issue and taxpayers should continue to file their returns as they normally would."

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A congressional official told The Washington Post that the IRS will attempt a "hard reboot" of its system that they hope will fix the issue.

The IRS has said that, at this point, all indications are that the problems are due to a hardware issue.

Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinMcConnell focuses on confirming judicial nominees with COVID-19 talks stalled Hillicon Valley: FBI chief says Russia is trying to interfere in election to undermine Biden | Treasury Dept. sanctions Iranian government-backed hackers On the Money: Pelosi draws line at .2T | Jobless claims dip | Swing-state jobless numbers an issue for Trump MORE said Tuesday afternoon that Americans who were unable to pay their taxes because of the “high-volume technical issue” will get an extension when the site is running correctly again, the Associated Press reported.

The AP reported that the IRS website had been down most of the day and wasn’t operational as of 4:30 p.m.

Kautter noted that even though the deadline for Americans to file their taxes is Tuesday, they can still request a six-month extension on the IRS’s website.

He also said that people would not be penalized if their returns arrive late because of the system glitches, according to the Los Angeles Times.

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"If we can't solve it today, we'll figure out a solution," Kautter said. "Taxpayers would not be penalized because of a technical problem the IRS is having."

On the last day of last year’s tax filing season, the IRS received five million returns.

Some lawmakers had also said earlier in the day that the IRS should provide a grace period so that Americans who have issues filing their taxes because of the IRS’s systems failures are not penalized.

Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Richard NealRichard Edmund NealRep. Cedric Richmond set to join House Ways and Means Committee Coons beats back progressive Senate primary challenger in Delaware Pelosi: House will stay in session until agreement is reached on coronavirus relief MORE (D-Mass.) said that he hopes the IRS "will make accommodations so that every taxpayer attempting to file today has a fair shot to do so without penalty."

"Americans should not be punished for being unable to file their tax returns or pay their tax bills today," Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenGOP senator blocks Schumer resolution aimed at Biden probe as tensions run high Republican Senators raise concerns over Oracle-TikTok deal Hillicon Valley: TikTok, Oracle seek Trump's approval as clock winds down | Hackers arrested for allegedly defacing U.S. websites after death of Iranian general | 400K people register to vote on Snapchat MORE, (D-Ore.) said.

Wyden added that while it isn’t clear what is causing the IRS’s systems failure, Republicans’ lack of funding for the IRS “will only compound the issue."

Naomi Jagoda contributed reporting.