Because the TAS is an independent organization within the IRS that is offered free of charge, you must meet certain requirements in order to take advantage of their services. The people who often qualify for taxpayer advocate assistance fall in to five main categories based on their circumstances:
1) If you are in a situation where time is of the essence and the IRS needs to move quicker than it normally does in order to solve the issue. For example, times when the IRS must remove a levy or release a lien or the taxpayer will suffer unnecessary financial harm. Or, if you have experienced a delay of more than 30 days to resolve a tax account problem with the IRS. Furthermore, if you will suffer irreparable injury or long term adverse impacts if relief is not granted by the IRS in a timely manner.
2) For cases which have many IRS units and people involved, the TAS will become the coordinator to make sure the process runs smoothly between all parties involved.
3) If the taxpayer has tried to resolve the problem through normal IRS channels but these have broken down.
4) When the taxpayer is presenting facts or issues which are unique to their situation and the typical “one size fits all” approach will not work, or the IRS is not listening to the taxpayer’s problems and concerns, or possibly does not recognize that it needs new guidance for these circumstances.
5) If the manner in which the tax laws are being administered raise concerns of equity or have impaired your rights in any way as a taxpayer. Also, if the National Taxpayer Advocate has determined that compelling public policy necessitates assistance to an individual or group of taxpayers.
If your situation does not fall under those circumstances, the TAS may still be able to help. If you are suffering an economic burden, if your case involves many layers and complex issues, or if you specifically request and insist on the service, the TAS will take your case and help you. According to the TAS website, they generally will not accept cases which involve pure processing (such as processing original tax returns, amended returns, rejected and unpostable returns, and injured [but not innocent] spouse claims), but encourage you to take advantage of the service to see if it may be beneficial for you.
Please keep in mind the information and advice presented in this blog is not intended to be used as formal legal advice. Contact a tax professional for personalized tax advice pertaining to your specific situation. While we try and answer all parts of the question when we write our blogs, sometimes there may be some left unanswered. If you have any questions about your problems with the IRS, SBOE, FTB, or BOE, or tax law in general, call RJS Law at (619) 595-1655.