IRS Seeks Volunteers for Taxpayer Advocacy Panel Through May 16

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The Internal Revenue Service seeks civic-minded volunteers to serve on the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel (TAP), a federal advisory committee that listens to taxpayers, identifies major taxpayer concerns, and makes recommendations for improving IRS service and customer satisfaction.

Taxpayer Advocacy Panel logo

Taxpayer Advocacy Panel logo

The TAP is vital because it provides the IRS with the taxpayers’ perspective as well as recommendations for improvement.

The Internal Revenue Service seeks civic-minded volunteers to serve on the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel (TAP), a federal advisory committee that listens to taxpayers, identifies major taxpayer concerns, and makes recommendations for improving IRS service and customer satisfaction.

The TAP provides a forum for taxpayers to raise concerns about IRS service and offer suggestions for improvement. The TAP reports annually to the Secretary of the Treasury, the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, and National Taxpayer Advocate. The Office of the Taxpayer Advocate is an independent organization within the IRS that provides support for and oversight over TAP.

“In trying to comply with an increasingly complex tax system, taxpayers may find they need different services than the IRS is currently providing,” said Nina E. Olson, the National Taxpayer Advocate. “The TAP is vital because it provides the IRS with the taxpayers’ perspective as well as recommendations for improvement. This helps the IRS deliver the best possible service to assist taxpayers in meeting their tax obligations.”

The TAP includes members from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, and one member from abroad who represents U.S. taxpayers living overseas. Each member is appointed to represent the interests of taxpayers in his or her geographic location, as well as taxpayers as a whole.

To be a member of the TAP, a person must be a U.S. citizen, not be a current employee of any bureau of the Treasury Department or have worked for any bureau of the Treasury Department within the three years preceding December 1 of the current year, be current with his/her federal tax filing and payment obligations, be able to commit 200 to 300 volunteer hours during the year, and pass a Federal Bureau of Investigation criminal background check. Individuals who practice before the IRS must be in good standing with the IRS. New TAP members will serve a three-year term starting in December 2016. Applicants chosen as alternate members will be considered to fill any vacancies that open in their areas during the next three years.

TAP is seeking members or alternates in the following locations:

  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • New Hampshire
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Puerto Rico
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Utah
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Federal advisory committees are required to select members that represent a balance of perspectives. As such, individuals from underrepresented groups, Native Americans and non-tax professionals, are encouraged to apply. However, all timely applications from the locations listed above will be considered.

Applications for TAP will be accepted through May 16, 2016. Applicants must apply online at http://www.usajobs.gov.

For additional information about TAP or the application process, visit http://www.improveirs.org or call 888-912-1227 (a toll-free call) and select option number 5. Callers outside of the U.S. and U.S. territories may call 214-413-6523 (not a toll-free call). The TAP staff may also be reached via email at taxpayeradvocacypanel(at)irs(dot)gov for assistance.

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Maryclaire Ramsey
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