Internal Revenue Service Seeks Volunteers for Taxpayer Advocacy Panel

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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 key taxpayer issues and makes recommendations for improving IRS service.

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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 key taxpayer issues and makes recommendations for improving IRS service. The Taxpayer Advocacy Panel is now accepting applications for these volunteer positions in certain states and from U.S. citizens living abroad or in a U.S. territory.

TAP provides a forum for taxpayers to raise concerns about IRS service and offer suggestions for IRS improvement. TAP reports annually to the Secretary of the Treasury, the IRS Commissioner and the National Taxpayer Advocate. The Taxpayer Advocate Service, an independent organization within the IRS, provides oversight of 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, 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.”

TAP membership includes representatives from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. In addition, TAP is seeking to include at least one member representing international taxpayers. For these purposes, “international taxpayers” are broadly defined to include U.S. citizens working, living, or doing business abroad or in a U.S. territory. Each member is appointed to represent the interests of the taxpayers in their geographic location as well as the interests of the general taxpayer population as a whole.

To be a member of TAP you must be a U.S. citizen, current with your federal tax obligations, able to commit 200 to 300 hours during the year and pass an FBI criminal background check. New TAP members will serve a three-year term starting in December 2013.

TAP is seeking members in the following locations: California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, Puerto Rico and any other U.S. territory or location abroad. The panel needs alternates for the District of Columbia, Kansas, Kentucky, New Hampshire, New Jersey, South Carolina and Tennessee.

TAP applications will be accepted through April 1, 2013. Applications are available online at http://www.improveirs.org. For additional information about TAP or the application process, please call toll-free 888-912-1227 and select prompt number five. Callers outside of the U.S. and U.S. territories should call 954-423-7973 or email taxpayeradvocacypanel(at)irs(dot)gov.

The Taxpayer Advocacy Panel does not provide tax advice or help with individual tax problems. For assistance resolving a persistent tax problem or hardship caused by the IRS, visit http://www.TaxpayerAdvocate.irs.gov.

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Steve Berkey
Taxpayer Advocacy Panel
(954) 423-7973
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Sheila Andrews
Taxpayer Advocacy Panel
(317) 685-7596
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