WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Senator Bill Cassidy (R-La.), both members of the Senate Finance Committee, today introduced the Taxpayer Advocate Enhancement Act (S. 1283) to help increase the quality of services for taxpayers. The Cardin-Cassidy legislation would increase capacity at the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) by authorizing the office to hire and consult legal counsel.
“Congress created the National Taxpayer Advocate to serve as a strong, independent voice in the administration who answers only to the American taxpayers and Congress. Taxpayers need to know there is someone on their side, working on their behalf every day,” Senator Cardin said. “Our legislation will allow the Taxpayer Advocate Service to be more effective with the right resources to provide quality service and counsel.”
“Sometimes taxpayers need help,” said Dr. Cassidy. “This bill creates that help.”
The Office of the Taxpayer Advocate was created through the Portman-Cardin Internal Revenue Service Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998. It was created to assist taxpayers in resolving problems with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), identify areas where taxpayers have problems dealing with the IRS, provide recommendations on changes to administrative practices to mitigate problems, as well as recommend legislative changes that might be necessary. The Taxpayer Advocate Enhancement Act would amend the law to align with the Portman-Cardin legislation’s intent and allow TAS to hire the necessary staff that have the qualifications critical to helping taxpayers resolve their problems with the IRS.