It gives me great pride and joy to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel!
This year, the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel (TAP) marks a major milestone – two decades of advancing its mission of improving IRS customer service and administrative processes for U.S. taxpayers nationwide and abroad. With the challenges of the past few years, the dedicated work of our TAP volunteers is more important than ever to help identify and prioritize initiatives to modernize the IRS, improve customer service, and protect taxpayer rights.
To give a brief history, TAP is a Federal Advisory Committee established in 2002 under the authority of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Over the past 20 years, TAP has worked with over 700 citizen volunteers who have submitted more than 2,200 recommendations to the IRS to help them improve services for taxpayers. Every year, each TAP member must be willing to spend 200-300 hours working on finding solutions to a variety of issues that directly impact taxpayers. While the Taxpayer Advocate Service provides essential funding, technical, administrative, and clerical support to TAP, it is the more than 200,000 volunteer hours that serve as the heartbeat of this important group.
This diverse group of citizen volunteers come with a wide range of expertise and from backgrounds such as health care, real estate, higher education, military service, local government, and tax return preparation. No matter their locations or backgrounds, there is one thing that unites them all – a patriotic duty to serve and make the IRS work better for all taxpayers. TAP represents taxpayers from all 50 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and U.S. citizens working, living, or doing business abroad.