IRS stands for the Internal Revenue Service. This is a branch of the treasury department. The bureau first collected taxes in 1862 in order to raise money for funding the American civil war. It has the mandate to ensure that every American citizen pays taxes. Currently, the IRS collects over 2.4 trillion dollars in form of taxes.
During the civil war in July 1862, the then president, Abraham Lincoln created the office of the commissioner for internal revenue collection. The revenue collected was supposed to cater for all the expenses that were incurred during the war. After the civil war, the government realised that there was so much more to be done in terms of development if the citizens would keep on paying taxes. In February 1913, the congress got the powers to impose income tax to members of the states without apportionment among the states. This was popularly known as the 16th amendment. The law was ratified by most of the states over the subsequent years.
Between 1913 and 1970, the IRS went through a series of changes. During the first year after the amendment, no taxes were collected. The citizens simply collected IRS documents and they were checked for accuracy. By 1970, the IRS was using the microfilm technology to organise records especially the sensitive ones.
It is the duty of the IRS to make sure that every American pays taxes after meeting all the qualifications of becoming a state-recognised taxpayer. They do this by ensuring that all the income earners register and start paying taxes as soon as they have a taxable income. Apart from making sure that all taxable citizens pay their taxes on time, the IRS is also supposed to make tax exemptions and returns to those people who rightfully deserve it. For instance, if you are disabled or incapacitated in any way, the IRS is the right place to visit for tax exemptions. This body also helps to verify those people who qualify for the earned income credit (EITC), which is a refundable tax credit meant for working families under a lower income scale. Of late, this body has also helped in sensitising the public about the benefits of taking advantage of the Recovery Act, which provides tax incentives for people who buy new cars, first-time property buyers or students and parents paying for college fees.