IRS Taxpayer Advocate Criticizes IRS

ACA congratulates Nina Olson, head of the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS), for its excellent 2011 Annual Report to Congress, which was released January 11, 2012. The Tax Advocate Service is the oversight arm of the IRS and defender of the US taxpayer.

The report includes a very significant section of 142 pages on international tax issues  which you can access here ( ).   The full report can be reached at .

ACA has requested a response from IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman concerning this report.

The section on international issues provides the most thorough analysis to-date of the significant issues facing Americans resident overseas,  including:

  • the overwhelming complexity and cost of compliance,
  • the risk of step civil and criminal penalties for even inadvertent non-compliance,
  • the need for better IRS services for individual U.S. taxpayers living overseas and small businesses involved in international economic activity,

In addition, the TAS report severely criticizes the IRS handling of the 2009 Overseas Voluntary Disclosure Program.  The title of this section is: The IRSs Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program 'Bait and Switch' May undermine Trust for the IRS and Future Compliance.  
This TAS report is must reading for Americans overseas to understand the dynamics of the issues they face and to appreciate the vital role that TAS is playing in defending Americans overseas.