General Pipeline Processing

Centralized Filing at Cincinnati Campus

Receiving Dock
Mail is unloaded from trucks. Envelopes are sanded open and are placed in trays. Trays are delivered to Extracting.

The mail is opened at Tingle Tables (a multi-tray sorting rack for a desk or table top, with perhaps 17 letter-size trays). Single forms received without remittance are placed in buckets and are loaded on Kansas City carts (tall, multi-shelved rolling carts first used at Kansas City Service Center), which are delivered to Batching. Single forms received with remittance are placed in trays and are sent to Deposit Perfection. Multiple forms are sent to one or the other depending on whether or not a remittance is enclosed. Documents that have not been sent to Deposit Perfection are sent to Batching.

Deposit Perfection
Processes remittances. Entity designations are verified. Checks are scanned and verified, then are sent to the bank. Any remittances with documents that can not be associated with a valid EIN or SSN are sent to Entity. The rest of the documents are sent to Batching.

Buckets of returns are removed from the KC carts. They are date stamped and are sorted by Form. The sorted Forms are then placed in buckets. The buckets are sorted again into various categories, which are organized into sub-batches of 25 and are placed on the Batch cart. Specific tax entities are then identified. Statute problem returns are pulled out and routed to the Statutes Unit for review. Batched cases are placed on a cart that is delivered to Code and Edit. Documents with entity problems are sent to Entity.

The decedent’s SSN or other entity’s EIN is verified. An account for the estate or other entity is created on the IRS computer system (for Master File accounts; Non-Master File accounts must be manually created and established on a more limited computer system). Problem cases are worked by teams until an entity can be assigned. Correspondence with taxpayers may be necessary. When entity problems are resolved the returns are sent to Code and Edit.

Code and Edit
(Document Analysis)

Math verification of returns. Coding for any extension requests. If a §6166 election is identified the return is pulled out of the processing stream and is sent to one of 5 Exam Teams for the §6166 deferral computation, after which it is returned to the processing stream. A copy of the deferral computation is retained by the Team and a §6166 Tentative Allowance accounting file is set up, and a Tentative Allowance Letter is sent to the estate.

Document Locator Number (DLN) is stamped on each return. The numbers are sequential for identical types of returns. The DLN is a 14-digit number that tells where in the country the return was processed, what type of return it is, the date on which it was processed, and the specific spot in the batching sequence where it can be found. Completed cases are sent to Data Conversion.

Data Conversion
Unnumbered documents are pulled and are returned to Numbering. Extra documents may be pulled and be returned to Batching. Information is entered into the IRS computer system and is verified as having been accepted before the returns leave this area. Tax assessments show up on the computer system. Completed cases are sent to the Cycle Unit. From there the cases are shipped to Error Resolution. In many cases, 2 months will have passed since the return was received in Extracting by the time it goes to Files.

Error Resolution
Tax computation errors are resolved and the correct tax is computed based upon information submitted with the return and any math error corrections identified in Code and Edit. Correct assessments are entered into the computer system. Completed cases are sent to Files.

Labels and charge-out sheets are associated with the returns. The decedent’s gift tax return file will also be associated with the estate tax return. The completed packages are shipped to Classification.
All estate tax returns are reviewed, or “classified.” Those selected for examination are sent to the individual groups in the field, where the Supervisory Attorney in each group will review the returns for a second time.

NOTE: Names of some of the processing units and the number of teams working estate tax returns at Cincinnati Campus might have changed since this guide was first drafted. Any such changes reflect subsequent technology improvements, and also reflect the decreased number of estate tax returns filed each year as a result of the increasing estate tax return filing thresholds.