November 4, 2013
All Members of Post 312
We have learned of an Internal Revenue Manual that sets a new standard for documenting our member’s dates of service and character of service. IRS auditors reportedly are starting to fine Legion posts around the country for not keeping records of veterans’ DD-214 or documents that show them eligible to be members. The penalty for not having the proof of eligibility is, apparently $1000.00 per day.
In the face of these reports The American Legion National Convention recently passed three resolutions to address this problem. National Headquarters is addressing this issue. Lawmakers agree with The American Legion. Since the reports surfaced, U.S. Rep. Jerry Moran, R-Kan. and Rep Jeff Miller – chairman of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs – both have written letters requesting that the IRS respond to complaints its inspectors are asking posts to provide discharge papers or service records during reviews of their tax-exempt status.
It is important for our Post to be in compliance with the IRS. We are asking that all members forward a copy of their DD-214 or other documents that prove eligibility for The American Legion to be filed at the Post.
The DD-214 reveals Social Security numbers, dates of birth and in some cases, place of birth and medical information. The American Legion and the IRS only need your name, dates of service and character of service, all other information may be “blacked out”. All documents will be kept securely stored in the Post.
If you need assistance acquiring a copy of your DD-214 please contact the Post for help. You may also request your military records online at: www.archives.gov/veterans/
Send your DD-214 to:
American Legion Post 312
P.O. Box 97
Maple Park, IL. 60151
Your cooperation will be greatly appreciated.
Post 312 Commander
The American Legion recently reported that the Internal Revenue Service was fining Legion posts - up to $1,000 per day - for not keeping records of veterans' DD-214s, the separation document given by the military to prove honorable service, or other valid documentation. The Legion felt it was being wrongly targeted, resulting in the passing of three resolutions during the organization's national convention in Houston that called upon Congress to look into the IRS's field investigations into Legion posts, while lawmakers wrote letters to the IRS asking why inspectors were asking posts to provide discharge papers or service records during reviews of their tax-exempt statuses.
The IRS has now revised its position on the DD-214 requirement in section 501(c)19 of the Internal Revenue Code.