With April 15 looming, the IRS has announced that free tax help is available through their own Taxpayer Advocacy Service (TAS).
The Taxpayer Advocacy Service (TAS) is an independent organization within the IRS.
According their site, their mission is to “help taxpayers resolve problems with the IRS and recommend changes that will prevent the problems.”
There are some restrictions though and the TAS is not the first stop for those who have questions about filling out their tax forms.
The TAS says they can help if problems can’t be resolved with the IRS and:
1) Your problem is causing financial difficulties for you, your family, or your business;
2) You face (or your business is facing) an immediate threat of adverse action, and:
3) You have tried repeatedly to contact the IRS but no one has responded, or the IRS has not responded by the date promised.
Additionally, according to an email the IRS sent out earlier this week, the TAS has an internal system to check if an application is eligible and qualifies for help. Applicants may have to show one of two things in order to qualify:
1) The IRS procedure has been followed but it is not helping;
2) The applicant has tried to resolve the issues through normal channels without any success.
The TAS Procedure
TAS helps taxpayers understand their rights, especially those that the IRS must respect. The TAS ensures that all such rights as well as information are protected from the IRS even when the TAS interacts with the IRS on an applicant’s behalf.
As a qualified applicant, TAS assigns one advocate to your application. This advocate provides personal advice on the applicant’s tax issues and stays with the applicant at ever turn during negotiations and due procedures.
The thing to note is that the TAS advocate service is completely free.
TAS has at least one taxpayer advocate office location in every state, plus offices in Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia.
The numbers for these offices are listed in local directories, but you can also get additional information on locations through the IRS Advocate Website. Toll free calls can also be made to 1-877-777-4778 for more information.
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