Success Story: Taxpayer Advocate Service’s persistence reduces tax debt

November 8, 2018

Every year, the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) helps thousands of people with tax problems. This story is only one of many examples of how TAS helps resolve taxpayer’s tax issues. All personal details are removed to protect the taxpayer’s privacy.

Sometimes taxpayers contact TAS for help with one issue and, in resolving that issue, multiple issues arise – some of them quite complex. In this case, a taxpayer contacted TAS for help with a payment agreement for overdue taxes spanning more than twenty tax years. In researching the taxpayer’s accounts, the case advocate noted some expired collection statutes. The IRS generally has ten years from the date the return is filed and assessed to collect the taxes.

The advocate sent a referral to the IRS and asked it to correct the statutes on the taxpayer’s accounts, but the IRS’s initial response was that the taxpayer’s statutes were correct. The advocate consulted with a technical advisor, found additional IRS guidance and sent another request to the IRS asking it to make the necessary account corrections. The advocate’s persistence, advocacy, and thorough research resulted in the taxpayer paying no more than the correct amount of tax. In this case, the taxpayer’s debt was rightfully reduced by more than $100,000.00.

When working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, each individual or business taxpayer is assigned to an advocate who listens to the problem and helps the taxpayer understand what needs to be done to resolve their tax issue. TAS advocates will do everything they can to help taxpayers and work with them every step of the way. Occasionally TAS features stories of taxpayers and advocates who work together to resolve complex tax issues. Read more TAS success stories.

Learn more about whether TAS can help you: TAS eligibility.