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2000 AUTHORIZED DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION - GENERAL

General Statement

It is the department's policy to cooperate in the exchange of information within the limitations imposed by law. Thus, information in the custody of this department may, under certain circumstances, be disclosed. However, in keeping with the department's confidentiality and disclosure provisions, all confidential tax return data released under the exchange of information programs will be limited to information where the authorized requester substantiates a "need to know."

In this context, "need to know" is defined as the necessity to obtain specific information to execute official responsibilities.

Individuals have a "right to know" what information is being collected about them and for what purposes. This "right to know" is defined as the right to obtain information pursuant to court order, statute, or case law. Individuals also have the right to submit requests to correct their records.

Revenue and Taxation Code sections 19542-19570 prohibit the disclosure of information, with certain exceptions. Disclosure may be made, for example, to a taxpayer/claimant, an authorized representative, legislative committees, authorized personnel of the Internal Revenue Service, and tax officials of this State and of other states that impose an income tax.

2010 Requests for Federal Income Tax Return Information

Authority to inspect a State tax return does not necessarily carry with it the authority to inspect tax information from the United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

IRS data may only be disclosed to the following:

  1. Taxpayers and their authorized representatives.
  2. Designees of the IRS.
  3. State judicial and administrative officers in proceedings for enforcement of the Personal Income Tax Law and the Bank and Corporation Tax Law.
  4. The Attorney General for use in actions involving the Personal Income Tax Law and the Bank and Corporation Tax Law.
  5. The State Auditor, but only if the Franchise Tax Board is being audited.

Inspection of IRS information is subject to approval by the IRS under conditions authorized in the IRC.

2100 Authorized Disclosure

2110 Individuals

The disclosure of individual income tax return information shall be made to the following individuals upon written request:

  1. The individual for whom the return was made.
  2. If the individual for whom the return was made is legally incompetent, the trustee, or guardian of his or her estate.
  3. If the individual for whom the return was made has died, the administrator, executor or trustee of the estate. A certified copy of the letters of administration or testamentary must be furnished.
  4. The duly authorized representative of any of the foregoing persons.

2112 Partnerships

The disclosure of information from a partnership tax return shall be made pursuant to written request as follows:

  1. A "person" ("person" includes individuals, fiduciaries, partnerships, limited liability companies, limited liability partnerships, and corporations) who is a general partner of the partnership may be furnished a complete copy of the partnership return, including all Schedule K-1's pertaining to other partners of the partnership.
  2. A "person" who is a limited partner in a partnership may be furnished with a partial copy of the partnership return. Other than the schedule K-1 for the limited partner requester, the Schedule K-1's for the other partners of the partnership are NOT disclosable to the limited partner. However, the names and addresses of the other partners may be disclosed.

2113 Estates

The disclosure of information from the return of an estate shall be made, upon written request, to:

  1. The administrator, executor or trustee of the estate and to any beneficiary for those years that the beneficiary received a distribution from the estate.
  2. The duly constituted attorney-in-fact of any of the foregoing persons, subject to the conditions of inspection prescribed for such person.

2114 Trusts

The disclosure of information from the return of a trust shall be made, upon written request, to:

  1. The trustee(s).
  2. Any person who was a beneficiary of the trust during any part of the period covered by the return, upon submission of satisfactory evidence that the person was such a beneficiary.

2120 Banks and Corporations

The disclosure of information from the return of a bank or corporation is authorized to the following individuals:

  1. Any person designated by action of its board of directors, or other similar governing body, upon submission of satisfactory evidence of such action.
  2. Any officer or employee of the corporation, upon written request signed by any principal officer.
  3. If the corporation has been dissolved, any person who was authorized to inspect the return at the date of dissolution.
  4. The duly authorized representative of any of the foregoing persons.

2130 Homeowner and Renter Assistance Claims (HRA)

The disclosure of information from an HRA claim shall be authorized as to those individuals who meet the criteria (as it relates to the HRA claimant) listed in section 2110 above.