WASHINGTON — The IRS has published a request for public comment about a potential regulation that could restrict the marketing of so-called Refund Anticipation Loans. Tax preparers offer Refund Anticipation Loans (RALs) to allow taxpayers to cash in on a tax refund without having to wait for a refund check from the IRS.

Consumer advocates and credit union executives have criticized these loans for their high interest rates and fees, but some credit unions involved with the IRS’ Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program have offered similar products with generally lower fees and other charges.

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