To provide taxpayers with a clear understanding of their rights, the Internal Revenue Service Center has released the adoption of a “Taxpayer Bill of Rights.” The document groups various existing rights in the tax code into ten extensive sections. According to IRS Commissioner John A. Koskinen, “The Taxpayer Bill of Rights contains fundamental information to help taxpayers.” He also stated, “These are core concepts about which taxpayers should be aware. Respecting taxpayer rights continues to be a top priority for IRS employees, and the new Taxpayer Bill of Rights summarizes these important protections in a clearer, more understandable format than ever before.”

The National Taxpayer Advocate, Nina E. Olson stated, “Congress has passed multiple pieces of legislation with the title of “Taxpayer Bill of Rights.”” “However, taxpayer surveys conducted by my office have found that most taxpayers do not believe they have rights before the IRS and even fewer can name their rights. I believe the list of core taxpayer rights the IRS is announcing today will help taxpayers better understand their rights in dealing with the tax system.”

Various taxpayer rights are included in the tax code, however, they are dispersed throughout the code in a way that makes it challenging for people to understand. Much like the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights, the Taxpayer Bill of Rights includes 10 provisions. These provisions are as follows:

 

1. The Right to Be Informed

2. The Right to Qualify Service

3. The Right to Pay No More than the Correct Amount of Tax

4. The Right to Challenge the IRS’s Position and Be Heard

5. The Right to Appeal an IRS Decision in an Independent Forum

6. The Right to Finality

7. The Right to Privacy

8. The Right to Confidentiality

9. The Right to Retain Representation

10. The Right to a Fair and Just Tax System

 

These rights have been integrated into a redesigned version of Publication 1, a document that is regularly included in IRS communications with taxpayers.  A new version of Publication 1 has been added to the IRS website, and print copies will soon be included in IRS correspondence in the near future, as the IRS is in the peak of its correspondence mailing season as taxpayers receive follow-up correspondence from the 2014 filing season.

The Taxpayer Bill of Rights is accessible through the IRS.gov, where the 10 rights are highlighted. As additional information becomes available, the website will be updated. IRS Commissioner John A. Koskinen stated, “The Taxpayer Bill of Rights will service as an important education tool, and we plan to highlight it in many different forums and venues.”

For additional information on the Taxpayer Bill of Rights please visit IRS.gov or feel free to contact our office.

 

Source: IRS Issue Number: IR-2014-72