The IRS agreed to pay the National Organization for Marriage $50,000 after it leaked information from a 2008 tax return that was later published in 2012 on the website of the Human Rights Campaign. The chairman of the NOM said that he was thankful that the IRS admitted to wrongdoing after a long and arduous process. There was no comment from the IRS about the ruling, and it cited privacy reasons for not commenting on the case.
After the ruling was announced, a statement from the House Ways and Means Chairman contained strong words accusing the Department of Justice of trying to sweep the case under the rug by not pursing it aggressively. The statement also said that this was an indication that the DOJ should not be counted on to investigate other cases of alleged targeting of conservative groups by the IRS.
He further stated that a special investigator should be brought in to investigate other such cases. The National Organization for Marriage is a conservative group that fights for traditional marriage values while the Human Rights Commision is a group that promotes gay rights. The information that IRS reportedly leaked related to a list of donors on the group's tax return from 2008.
In almost all cases, tax return information is considered confidential unless the taxpayer agrees to have that information released to the public. Those who believe that their tax information has been improperly released or otherwise leaked may find it worthwhile to talk to a tax attorney. The attorney may also be able to help anyone who is having their wages garnished or is under the threat of a levy due to issues with previous tax returns.
Source: FOX News, "IRS agrees to $50,000 settlement in leaking of conservative group's donor records", June 24, 2014