Report Graphics

Report Graphics

Recent Coverage

Research Studies

For the National Taxpayer Advocate, thorough research and analysis of current tax issues and trends is a vital part of the Annual Report. The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) research projects yield accurate, insightful data that inform her as she advocates for taxpayers, and strengthen her authority and arguments before the IRS and Congress.

Report Features:

Low Income Taxpayer Clinic Program

TAS Research is working on a multi-year study to identify the major factors that drive taxpayer compliance behavior. The principal objective is to evaluate the impact of audits on the subsequent reporting compliance of sole proprietor taxpayers. Our preliminary findings suggest that overall IRS audits have a modest deterrent effect that diminishes in the years following the audit. This suggests any initial impact on compliance is short lived. These findings are consistent with previous TAS studies, and suggest there may be a group of taxpayers who are particularly resistant to the deterrent effect of audits. TAS Research is working with independent researchers to further explore this issue and we expect to publish the result of this collaboration by the end of 2015.

The National Taxpayer Advocate is concerned that a large number of IRS identity theft cases involve multiple issues, requiring victims to navigate a labyrinth of IRS operations and recount their experiences time and again. To get a better sense of how long it takes to fully resolve a victim’s account, TAS reviewed a representative sample of IRS ID theft cases. We found that from the taxpayer’s perspective, the average cycle time was nearly six months (179 days), and the IRS closed more than one-fifth of IDT cases before all issues were resolved. The National Taxpayer Advocate recommends that victims with multiple issues be assigned a sole IRS contact person who would work with them throughout the case, no matter how many different IRS units are involved behind the scenes.

Read the full discussion