There's a Whole Lot of Back-scratching Going on in DC
Lest you think that government entities don't "talk" to one another out of some misguided desire to maintain citizens' privacy, allow me to share this little tidbit and disabuse you of that Utopian notion.
Pepper and I are doing a re-fi on Moogie's Manor. Our lender set it up to qualify to run through Fannie Mae (and Fannie Mae is not even a real federal government entity, you understand) for secondary market purposes. To make her happy and feed her enormous ego, one must submit some thirty-odd pages of Application to Miss Mae, including one's most recent tax return.
Here's where it starts getting a little complicated.
Due to some investments and partnerships, we always get an extension to file our 1040s until October. This means the last Returns we have on hand at present are for 2012. Not 2013. Fannie Mae was not happy about this. Even though she has nothing to do with collecting taxes, she wanted to talk to her buddies over at the IRS to be sure we had filed an actual Extension and weren't just slacking and failing to file. She scratches her IRS-Bud's back and they scratch something of hers. I mean, the revenue we pump into the IRS is shared by the whole government, right?
Anyway, there's some silly federal rule designed to protect the privacy of we insignificant citizens, and Fannie Mae isn't permitted to talk to Internal Revenue without the citizen's permission. So, she has a handy-dandy form that the citizen "may" sign that says, in essence, "Sure! You gubmint guys chat about me and share anything about me with one another that your nosy little bureaucratic hearts desire! Live it up!"
Let's stop here briefly to reflect upon the fact that Fannie Mae has nothing to do with collecting or disbursing or determining the amount of taxes that anyone pays. Let's further reflect upon the fact that whether you file your tax returns has nothing to do with whether you can re-pay a loan.
Then let's think about the fact that your loan application will be peremptorily rejected if you refuse to authorize Miss Mae to snoop into your IRS records to satisfy her overactive curiosity and/or to give her ammunition to rat your slacking butt out to the IRS. Even though she has zero to do with taxes!
Did we sign it? Well, duh. (But only after a colorful rant about crony government and Big Brother by my roommate.) Just don't let yourself be fooled into believing that there's a functional firewall among government entities that protects we, the people.
And do not get Pepper started on Fannie Mae. He's been mumbling something about a class action lawsuit.