Tax professionals are often hesitant to volunteer for pro bono representation because they do not routinely deal with IRS collection or audits focusing on refundable credits, or they have not represented taxpayers before the U.S. Tax Court or other federal courts. Some volunteers may be interested in working on amicus briefs or Treasury regulation comments. The LITC Support Center is committed to supporting its volunteers by providing training, templates, and updates on current developments, as well as offering access to a network of experienced practitioners.
We want to help you help low income taxpayers.
Through our newsletter, LITC Connection, we share information about current programming, conferences, important cases and developments in the field of taxation that have significance for representation of low income taxpayers, including the Center’s amicus briefs. The newsletter is also a vehicle to raise emerging issues that we are seeing in LITC casework, as well as information about IRS operations that may impact unrepresented taxpayers.
We organize conferences and workshops on issues relating to taxpayer rights and challenges low income taxpayers face interacting with tax agencies and the courts. For example, in the fall of 2021 we held an online Workshop series, Reimagining Tax Administration: Social Programs Through the Tax Code, which explored the challenges faced by taxpayers and IRS alike when the tax system is used to deliver social benefits to low income and other under-resourced populations. Each year the Center for Taxpayer Rights organizes and convenes the International Conference on Taxpayer Rights, including a Workshop/Roundtable for Low Income Taxpayer Clinics. We submit comments on proposed U.S. Treasury regulations and submit amicus curiae briefs in federal and state tax cases raising significant issues pertaining to taxpayer rights and the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TBOR). We also identify substantive and procedural issues affecting low income taxpayers that would benefit from a coordinated litigation strategy, and assist LITCs and their volunteers in bringing cases before the courts. We maintain a FOIA Library holding our requests to the IRS under the Freedom of Information Act for data and other materials relating to IRS procedures and programs that impact low income taxpayers.
We are developing an expansive library of training videos and materials so LITC staff and volunteers can expand their skills. Our videos focus on topics that arise in federal tax controversy practice and representation of low income taxpayers before the IRS, including audits, appeals, collection, and litigation. We are also building a library of templates for pleadings, motions, and other documents used in the course of representing low income taxpayers. If you don’t find a video or template that meets your needs, please send us an email with the suggestion. We also provide live (virtual) training upon request.
LITCs are vital for ensuring two key taxpayer rights: the right to retain representation, and the right to a fair and just tax system. By becoming a volunteer and offering your services through LITC Connect, you can help LITCs help low income taxpayers.