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ASK THE EDD ATTORNEY-PLEASE EXPLAIN THE IRS’S NEW VERSION OF THE TAXPAYER BILL OF RIGHTS

By Robert S. Schriebman

Several years ago the IRS decided that taxpayers were entitled to certain rights during audits and collection proceedings. It put together the first Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TBR #1). Probably the most important provision of TBR #1 was the right to consult with a professional tax advisor before meeting with any IRS representative. There were two more versions of TBR that were introduced. The last major update of TBR came from the scandalous IRS hearings that occurred before the Senate Finance Committee in 1997 and 1998. I testified during those proceedings. I worked hand-in-hand with the late Senator William Roth (Roth IRA). My testimony led to the creation of the Collection Due Process provisions in the Internal Revenue Code. I am very proud of my contribution to the creation and protection of taxpayer rights.

As a result of the recent scandals within the IRS and the destruction of critical emails, and who knows what else, Congress has put pressure on the IRS to create yet a new version of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TBR #4).

The new Taxpayer Bill of Rights takes the multiple existing rights embedded in the tax code and groups them into 10 broad categories, making them more visible and easier for taxpayers to find on IRS.gov.

Publication 1, "Your Rights as a Taxpayer," has been updated with the 10 rights and will be sent to millions of taxpayers this year when they receive IRS notices on issues ranging from audits to collection. The rights will also be publicly visible in all IRS facilities for taxpayers and employees to see.

The IRS released the Taxpayer Bill of Rights following extensive discussions with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, an independent office inside the IRS that represents the interests of U.S. taxpayers. Since 2007, adopting a Taxpayer Bill of Rights has been a goal of National Taxpayer Advocate Nina E. Olson, and it was listed as the Advocate's top priority in her most recent Annual Report to Congress.

Constitution's Bill of Rights, the Taxpayer Bill of Rights contains 10 provisions. They are:

  1. The Right to Be Informed
  2. The Right to Quality 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

The IRS has also created a special section of IRS.gov to highlight the 10 rights. The web site will continue to be updated with information as it becomes available, and taxpayers will be able to easily find the Bill of Rights from the front page. The IRS internal web site for employees is adding a special section so people inside the IRS have easy access as well.

As these ten rights are developed and explained by the IRS I will keep you informed as to their meaning and how they will impact you in the future when dealing with the IRS.

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An EDD lawyer, Robert Schriebman has a successful practice in the Rolling Hills Estates area of Los Angeles County serving clients throughout California and the United States.

As a trusted EDD attorney, has successfully dedicated more than 30 years to helping individual taxpayers, business owners, CPAs, Enrolled Agents, and tax attorneys navigate the complicated tax systems of the federal and state governments.

Robert Schriebman has written over 20 books including the major manual used nationally by practitioners and the IRS, "IRS Tax Collection Procedures - A Manual for Practitioners" published by Commerce Clearing House and the only 2 books ever published dealing with how California Employment Development Department (EDD) operates. See "California Tax Collection Practice and Procedures" and "California Taxation Practice and Procedure," both published by Commerce Clearing House.