Nobody likes the Internal Revenue Service, and fewer still ever since the IRS scandal about non-profit audit targeting against conservative groups hit last year. The tax code is long and impossible to decipher without law and accounting degrees, and rules often seem arbitrary.
Now, however, the IRS has approved a "taxpayer bill of rights" that should give Americans more clarity on what they're facing when dealing with the IRS. Those "rights" are according to the Taxpayer Advocate Service:
In unveiling this "bill of rights," taxpayers might hopefully get a better idea of how to go about their business with the IRS. As the Tax Foundation's Joe Henchman writes:
This is big. The Taxpayer Bill of Rights may initially strike you as a meaningless gimmick. But Nina Olson, the National Taxpayer Advocate, has been pressing for it since 2007. She explains that taxpayers often don’t know what rights they have before the IRS, and the IRS is often ignorant of the rights taxpayers have before them.
Time will tell if these rules make it easier or more fair for Americans who deal with the IRS or if it's just symbolic nonsense meant to improve the standing of the IRS in the eyes of taxpayers. Here's hoping for the former.