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Published:   |   Last Updated: February 8, 2024

TAS Acts to Help After a Payroll Service Provider Embezzles From Over 400 Small Businesses

Every year, the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) helps thousands of people with tax problems. This story is only one of many examples of how TAS helps resolve taxpayer’s tax issues. All personal details are removed to protect the taxpayer’s privacy.



TAS helped a small business defrauded by an unscrupulous Payroll Service Provider (PSP). When a PSP embezzles funds from a business, the business is in effect, expected to pay twice. The taxpayer provides money to the PSP to calculate and deposit its employment taxes with the IRS. However, if the PSP embezzles the money instead of sending it to the IRS, the taxpayer is still liable for the debt to the IRS. In this case, TAS worked to obtain release of a levy the IRS placed on the business for its unpaid tax debt. After determining hundreds of businesses were affected by this one PSP, TAS also worked to help other businesses avoid lien filings or penalties, and helped taxpayers resolve their debts through offers in compromise. TAS turned the issue into a national project, successfully advocating for taxpayers throughout the country.

If you need information on a specific tax topic, visit the TAS Get Help resource. It offers a step-by step guide on what you can do to settle some IRS issues on your own, what your taxpayer rights are and other options available to help you get resolution. Most issues can be resolved directly by working with the IRS. However, if you have tried, but are still unable to resolve an IRS issue, learn more about whether TAS can help you: TAS eligibility.

When working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, each individual or business taxpayer is assigned to an advocate who listens to the problem and helps the taxpayer understand what needs to be done to resolve their tax issue. TAS advocates will do everything they can to help taxpayers and work with them every step of the way. Occasionally we feature stories of taxpayers and advocates who work together to resolve complex tax issues. Read more TAS success stories.