The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) is an independent entity within the IRS that assists taxpayers in resolving IRS-related issues. If you’re facing a significant tax issue or hardship, the TAS can be an invaluable resource. This guide will introduce you to the TAS and explain how to use this service to resolve complex tax problems.


If you have an ongoing issue with the IRS that can’t be resolved through normal channels, or if dealing with the IRS is causing you financial difficulties, the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) can assist. Additionally, understanding how TAS operates and when to seek their help can significantly ease your navigation through tax issues. Transitioning to TAS support can make the resolution process smoother and less stressful.

What is the Taxpayer Advocate Service?

The Taxpayer Advocate Service is an independent office within the IRS that assists taxpayers facing economic harm or unresolved tax problems. Moreover, TAS helps those who believe an IRS system or procedure isn’t functioning correctly. Understanding how TAS operates and knowing when to seek their help can make a significant difference in resolving tax issues efficiently.

Key Functions of TAS:

  1. Help with Unresolved Tax Issues: TAS helps taxpayers whose problems are causing financial difficulties and who have been unable to resolve their issues with the IRS.
  2. Offer Guidance: TAS can offer advice and guidance to taxpayers who are unable to understand the IRS’s processes and need help in dealing with the IRS.
  3. Act as an Advocate: TAS acts as an advocate for taxpayers within the IRS, ensuring that taxpayers receive fair treatment and that their issues are resolved under the Taxpayer Bill of Rights.

How Does the Taxpayer Advocate Service Help?

1. Dealing with IRS Problems

If your problem with the IRS is causing financial difficulties or if you haven’t received a response or resolution from the IRS in a reasonable time, the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) can step in to help. Understanding when and how to seek TAS assistance can make a significant difference in resolving your tax issues efficiently.

How to Use This Service:

2. Help with Systemic Issues

TAS also helps to identify systemic problems that affect many taxpayers. If your issue goes beyond your specific case, TAS can work to address and change the broader systems or processes causing the problem.

How to Use This Service:

3. Education and Advocacy

TAS educates taxpayers about their rights and responsibilities. Additionally, it advocates for changes in the IRS’s systems and procedures to enhance taxpayer service and fairness. Through this dual approach, TAS aims to ensure a more equitable and efficient tax process for all.

How to Use This Service:

Steps to Request Assistance from the Taxpayer Advocate Service

  1. Determine If You Are Eligible: You are eligible for TAS assistance if your IRS problem is causing financial difficulty, you face an immediate threat of adverse action, you have tried repeatedly to contact the IRS but no one has responded, or the IRS has not responded by the date promised.
  2. Contact Your Local Advocate: The Taxpayer Advocate Service has at least one local office in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. You can find your local advocate on the IRS website.
  3. Fill Out Form 911: Fill out Form 911, Request for Taxpayer Advocate Service Assistance, and explain your IRS problem and the type of help you need.
  4. Prepare Your Documentation: Gather any documentation related to your IRS problem, including any notices you have received from the IRS, correspondence, tax returns, and any records of communication with the IRS.
  5. Follow Up: After submitting your request, follow up with TAS if you do not hear back within a reasonable time. Keep a record of all communications with TAS.

Tips for Working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service

  1. Be Prepared: Before contacting TAS, gather all relevant documentation and information regarding your tax issue.
  2. Be Honest and Clear: Clearly and honestly explain your situation and the help you need. Provide all necessary information to help TAS understand your issue.
  3. Keep Records: Keep detailed records of all your interactions with TAS and the IRS, including dates, names, and details of conversations.
  4. Stay Engaged: Stay involved in the process and respond promptly to any requests from your advocate for information or documentation.
  5. Be Patient: Resolving tax issues can take time, especially if they are complex. Be patient but persistent in following up on your case.


The Taxpayer Advocate Service is a powerful ally for taxpayers facing difficult issues with the IRS. By effectively utilizing TAS, you can resolve tax issues smoothly and avoid economic harm. TAS ensures fair treatment for all taxpayers. It helps you understand and meet your tax responsibilities. Remember, TAS is there to support you. They guide you through tax problems and provide necessary assistance.