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Make Way for the U.S. Taxpayers’ Bill Of Rights

March 11, 2014

On the 25th of February, 2014 the U.S. House of Representatives began its discussions to vote for the passage of two bills: H.R. 2530 and H.R. 2531. These were amongst the various bills introduced in mid-2013 by Peter Roskam,  Congressman, Representative of Illinois, and collectively called the “Taxpayers Bill of Rights.”  They aim to protect  U.S. taxpayers’ freedom of speech and religion (integral parts of the constitutional Bill of Rights), as compared to the existing taxpayer Bill of Rights which has more to do with inflation increase and population concerns from a tax perspective.

Peter Roskam supported his bills by stating that “practically every day there’s news of a new scandal at the IRS, and unfortunately it seems the Administration is incapable of getting the IRS under control and restoring faith in the agency.” He continued by saying, “The targeting of individuals by the IRS based on their political and social beliefs cuts to the core of Americans’ trust in government, and it’s time to institute reforms in order to protect taxpayers from further abuse.”

AG Tax experts have prepared an overview of the ‘Taxpayer Bill of Rights’ which would increase transparency and accountability of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These bills were introduced by Rep. Peter Roskam as “Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights”

IRS Taxpayers Bill of Rights

Taxpayer Transparency and Efficient Audit Act, H.R. 2530: Requires the IRS to disclose, to the taxpayer, if the IRS shares their tax information with any other government agency, and quote a time limit until when an audit can be carried out on a taxpayer.

Protecting Taxpayers from Intrusive IRS Requests Act, H.R. 2531: Bars the IRS from inquiring a taxpayer about his/her religious, political, or social beliefs.

Integrity Restoration Strategy or IRS Act, H.R. 2532: Reforms the application procedure for groups/organizations applying for ‘tax-exempt’ status. An organization will automatically be granted ‘tax-exempt’ status if the IRS does not respond within the expected time, thus increasing the burden for IRS to prove that the organization does not deserve the tax-exempt status. *Yet to Pass the House of Representatives

Stop Playing on Citizens’ Cash or the SPOCC Act, H.R. 2533:  Prevents IRS officials from misusing citizens’ money on lavish conferences with certain unnecessary expenses. In one of the conferences held in 2010, the IRS had spent an estimated $4.1 million which included an artist who was paid $17,000 for a motivational presentation, and a video parody of “Star Trek”; also one of the reasons for the recent IRS budget cut by the Senate.*Yet to Pass the House of Representatives

Expected Reforms if the Bills Pass the Senate

U.S. taxpayers could look forward to the following possibilities if the bills (H.R. 2530: Taxpayer Transparency and Efficient Audit Act and H.R. 2531: Protecting Taxpayers from Intrusive IRS Requests Act) are passed by the Senate.

Save significant amounts of taxpayers’ time with matters related to taxes (such as audits, which are proposed to be closed within a year’s period with no trouble to the taxpayer in the future in the form of notices, etcetera).

Prevent the IRS from grilling taxpayers with irrelevant “tax questions” about their religious, social, or political beliefs; however, if absolutely necessary, the IRS commissioner would first need to obtain permission from the Congress regarding the questions to be asked, the taxpayers who would be questioned, and the reason for carrying out the questioning.

Quick response and more streamlined correspondence if the IRS issues a notice for an audit. The auditor either needs to process the claims at its earliest or drop them within “30 days” (a newly introduced rule). Additionally, in case the taxpayer corresponds with the IRS regarding an audit, he/she would need to be provided a proper, immediate written response with significant content rather than a mail stating that “your mail has been received, and you will be contacted within 60/90/180 business days,” or “thanks for contacting” within the 30 days period.

Full Disclosure from the IRS if it shares any taxpayers’ information/data with any other government (local/state/ foreign), or a federal body/agency as it is  a taxpayer’s prerogative to know what happens with the information he/she provides to the IRS as a part of his tax filing obligations.

The proposed bill of taxpayers’ rights upholds basic rights which should be automatically granted. If the bills pass, they promise control and regulation of the supreme power granted to the IRS. Be sure to check future articles for the impact of this new legislation as it seeks approval in the House of Representatives.

AG Tax LLP Can Help

If you have any tax-related queries or need assistance with tax planning or filing please contact AG Tax. Our tax professionals are highly-experienced with U.S. and Canadian tax laws and can provide you the right guidance to handle your tax situation.

Aylett Grant Tax LLP is a full service accounting firm with a dedicated team of experts, who are highly-qualified and experienced in handling situations related to U.S., Canadian, and other international tax laws.

We can assist with:

  • Canadian Personal and Corporate tax returns
  • Cross Border Taxation and Business Planning
  • U.S. Personal and Corporate Taxation
  • Disclosure of Foreign Assets and other information filings
  • Retirement planning
  • Estate Planning, Inheritance tax advice

To obtain a quote or to arrange for a consultation to discuss your tax related queries, please contact us at:

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Disclaimer: The information in this publication is accurate as of the time of its publication. AG Tax assumes no responsibility for changes to tax legislation subsequent to the publication of this document. The information provided is for general information purposes only and should not be acted upon without seeking professional advice. If you would like to engage our services, please contact our staff and obtain authorization to send our firm confidential information. A client relationship is not created by the transmission of information. A client relationship is only formed with our firm when a scope and engagement letter signed by the firm and the potential client detailing the terms of engagement is present.

ABOUTAylett Grant Tax, LLP
With offices across Canada, we are positioned to manage and process the full scope of your Canadian, US and US Canada cross-border tax filing needs.
12752 28th Ave, Surrey, BC, V4A 2P4
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With offices across Canada, we are positioned to manage and process the full scope of your Canadian, US and US Canada cross-border tax filing needs.
12752 28th Ave, Surrey, BC, V4A 2P4
104–4220 98 St NW Edmonton AB, T6E 6A1

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