Interested candidates from all states encouraged to apply by March 31 IR-2023-36, March 2, 2023 WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today announced the selection of eight new members to serve on the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel for 2023. The IRS recommended and the Department of the Treasury approved the new members, who will join eight TAP alternates approved in a prior year, for a total of 16 new active members. When added to returning members, these new TAP members will round out the panel with 63 volunteers for 2023. New members were selected from a pool of approximately 200 interested individuals who applied during an open recruitment period last spring and from alternate members who applied in previous years. "Congratulations and welcome to all of our new Taxpayer Advocacy Panel members," said National Taxpayer Advocate Erin M. Collins. "I am grateful for the time and talents the members bring to the panel and their devotion to making the American tax system work better for everyone. Their commitment to listen to taxpayers, understand the problems they are experiencing, and then bring that perspective to the table with our IRS partners is a great model for how we can improve the taxpayer experience with the IRS when we work together." TAP members serve as a conduit for bringing grassroots concerns raised by the taxpaying public to the attention of the IRS, and work on a variety of issues that impact taxpayers in key areas where the IRS and the public interact the most. "I predict this is going to be a busy and productive year, and I know our TAP volunteers are up to the challenge," said 2023 National TAP Chair Dr. Eugene Lillie. For a breakdown of the new TAP members by location, visit TAP Members. 20 years of advocacy For more than 20 years, TAP members have worked hard to make the tax system work better for taxpayers. In the last 20 years, the TAP has submitted more than 2,200 recommendations on customer service issues that directly impact how taxpayers interact with the IRS, whether by phone, mail or online. In 2022 alone, the TAP made 201 recommendations to the IRS, many of which were implemented. These recommendations have resulted in improvements to IRS tax forms, instructions and publications that make them easier for taxpayers to understand. Some examples of issues on which TAP members have partnered with the IRS to improve taxpayer service include: Implementing customer callback technology; Providing taxpayers with the option to get copies of past tax returns through Free File; Allowing longer extension times for taxpayers to file returns; and Creating an online portal taxpayers can use to easily look up information needed to claim education credits. Additionally, the TAP has developed outreach materials to educate entrepreneurs about tax return filing requirements, and successfully proposed improvements to the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Recruitment now open for 2024 Applications for the 2024 TAP year are now being accepted from civic-minded volunteers looking for ways to serve their communities. TAP members volunteer to serve a three-year term and are expected to devote 200 to 300 hours per year to panel activities. The TAP continues to make a difference in the U.S. tax system, and new members have a unique opportunity to join this dynamic group. To the extent possible, TAP members are selected in part to achieve demographic and geographic diversity, providing balanced representation from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, with an additional member representing the interests of taxpayers working, living or doing business abroad. Who can apply? Federal advisory committees are required to have a balanced representation of different viewpoints. Therefore, applicants from under-represented groups, such as Native Americans and non-tax professionals, are particularly encouraged to apply. The TAP is currently seeking candidates in the following states and territories: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wyoming. However, candidates residing in all locations are encouraged to apply, and all timely applications will be considered. TAP members must be U.S. citizens who are current with their federal tax obligations and able to commit 200 to 300 volunteer hours during the year. TAP members must also pass a Federal Bureau of Investigation criminal background check. Members cannot be federally registered lobbyists or current employees of the Department of the Treasury or the IRS. Former Treasury or IRS employees and former TAP members can be considered for appointment three years after their employment or previous TAP membership has ended. Tax practitioner applicants must be in good standing with the IRS (meaning not currently under suspension or disbarment). New TAP members will serve a three-year term starting in Dec. 2023. Applicants chosen as alternate members will be considered to fill any vacancies in their areas during the next three years. Applications must be submitted by March 31, 2023, to be considered. Visit USAJOBS for more details about how to apply to become a TAP member. More about the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel The TAP is a federal advisory committee that serves an important role in tax administration. TAP members are a diverse group of citizens who possess a sense of civic duty, patriotism and belief in an effective and well-regarded tax system. TAP members volunteer their time and energy to improve IRS services and taxpayer satisfaction by listening to taxpayers, identifying issues and making recommendations to improve IRS service and customer satisfaction. Oversight and program support for the TAP are provided by the Taxpayer Advocate Service, an independent organization within the IRS led by the National Taxpayer Advocate. TAS helps resolve taxpayer account problems and makes administrative and legislative recommendations to mitigate systemic problems in tax administration. For additional information about the TAP, visit Join TAP or call toll-free at 888-912-1227 and select prompt number five. Callers outside the U.S. may call 202-317-3087 (not a toll-free number) or email the TAP staff at firstname.lastname@example.org. A video is also available with more information about the TAP and about how to contribute to this dynamic group of volunteers.