So much of what we write here on this blog may make taxpayers feel insignificant and powerless when they are facing the IRS. Taxes are complicated and very, very important — and when you include the fact that the IRS often isn’t the most effective or friendly of agencies, the matter becomes a major problem for people who are just trying to clarify or fix their tax situation.
Every taxpayer has rights, but sometimes they may not feel like enough. Thankfully, it appears that lawmakers are pushing for enhanced protections for taxpayers by proposing legislation that would expand the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, as well as hold the IRS to task when they fail to provide the necessary services to taxpayers.
We won’t get into the exact specifics of the proposal, mainly because it is exactly that — a proposal. It will likely be changed or revised over the next few months, and even if it does come into effect, the rules and provisions likely won’t be the same as they are right now.
But this proposal is important for two reasons. The first is that it is nice to know that lawmakers are trying to improve the rights and protections that taxpayers have, while also keeping the IRS in check.
However, this story is also important because it highlights just how fickle the relationship between the IRS and the taxpayer has become. IRS customer service is not exactly the best, and this has been known for far too long. No matter what rules are put in place, taxpayers are going to need help from time to time dealing with the IRS.
Source: AccountingToday, “Senators Introduce Bill to Enhance Taxpayer Bill of Rights,” Michael Cohn, June 16, 2015