How the Taxpayer Advocate Is Fighting for You

Source: Taxpayer Advocate Service.

Taxes are a drag, and they can sometimes seem unfair. Even worse, it usually seems like there's little we can do about it and little reason to be hopeful for positive change. Buck up, though -- because there is hope. The IRS is not out to wring every tax dollar from you that it can. It isn't unsympathetic to your concerns. In fact, within the IRS itself is our National Taxpayer Advocate, who has been fighting for us taxpayers.

The Taxpayer Advocate Service focuses on the most critical issues it sees. Source: Taxpayer Advocate Service.

Deaf ears

Unfortunately, many of the Taxpayer Advocate's words go unheeded. In her 2013 report to Congress, for example, she noted that "The IRS desperately needs more funding to serve taxpayers and increase voluntary compliance." Instead, Congress has been cutting funding for the IRS repeatedly, which makes no sense at all, as it leaves the agency less able to serve taxpayers -- and less able to collect taxes due. In her 2013 report to Congress, the Taxpayer Advocate noted that for every dollar appropriated to the IRS in fiscal year 2013, it collected $255, adding, "If the chief executive officer of a Fortune 500 company were told that each dollar allocated to his company's Accounts Receivable Department would generate multiple dollars in return, it is difficult to see how the CEO would keep his job if he chose not to provide the department with the funding it needed. Yet that is essentially what has been happening with respect to IRS funding for years."

Our tax code, approaching 4 million words, is complex and could use some improvement, while the IRS itself could be improved in many ways. One ray of hope for us all is that there's a Taxpayer Advocate Service working for us. As Nina Olson has aptly observed:

Taxpayer rights are central to voluntary compliance,

Thanks, Nina Olson -- and good luck!

The $15,978 Social Security bonus most retirees completely overlook

If you're like most Americans, you're a few years (or more) behind on your retirement savings. But a handful of little-known "Social Security secrets" could help ensure a boost in your retirement income. In fact, one MarketWatch reporter argues that if more Americans knew about this, the government would have to shell out an extra $10 billion annually. For example: one easy, 17-minute trick could pay you as much as $15,978 more... each year! Once you learn how to take advantage of all these loopholes, we think you could retire confidently with the peace of mind we're all after. Simply click here to discover how you can take advantage of these strategies.

The article How the Taxpayer Advocate Is Fighting for You originally appeared on

Longtime Fool specialistSelena Maranjian,whom you canfollow on Twitter , has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days . We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy .

Copyright © 1995 - 2015 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy .

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Other Topics


Latest Markets Videos

    The Motley Fool

    Founded in 1993 in Alexandria, VA., by brothers David and Tom Gardner, The Motley Fool is a multimedia financial-services company dedicated to building the world's greatest investment community. Reaching millions of people each month through its website, books, newspaper column, radio show, television appearances, and subscription newsletter services, The Motley Fool champions shareholder values and advocates tirelessly for the individual investor. The company's name was taken from Shakespeare, whose wise fools both instructed and amused, and could speak the truth to the king -- without getting their heads lopped off.

    Learn More