What the Taxpayer Bill of Rights Means for You

If you consider the Internal Revenue Service the meanest troll under the bridge, you might be surprised to learn that the IRS stands behind a Taxpayer Bill of Rights created to protect you. The IRS introduced the Taxpayer Bill of Rights in June 2014, bringing together various guarantees and protections that had been scattered throughout the tax code. It offers a small amount of comfort and a substantial level of protection that you should be aware of as a taxpayer.

  1. The Taxpayer Bill of Rights

  2. The right to be informed

  3. The right to quality service

  4. The right to pay no more than the correct amount of tax

  5. The right to challenge the IRS’s position and be heard

  6. The right to appeal an IRS decision in an independent forum

  7. The fight to finality

  8. The right to privacy

  9. The right to confidentiality

  10. The right to retain representation

  11. The right to a fair and just tax system

For more information, or if you want to cure insomnia by reading tax documents instead of counting sheep, you can gain exhaustive knowledge about these rights by accessing comprehensive IRS fact sheets here.

For those who want the two-minute takeaway about what these rights means for you:

Plain English. The IRS’s commitment to keeping taxpayers informed and to providing high-quality service manifests itself in concise, readable publications and instructions. Today’s tax documents are much clearer and to-the-point than those of the past. To better serve taxpayers, they give concrete examples illustrating nuances of tax rules. I’ve been doing taxes since the days when we used pencils and adding machines, and I remember the obscurity of tax publications that you had to pick up at the library or receive in the mail. Twenty-five years later, I greatly appreciate the ability to find wha