Your Rights as a Taxpayer

As a taxpayer, you have 10 fundamental rights that the IRS must protect. Your 10 rights as a taxpayer rights are:

  1.  Right to be Informed.

Right for a clear explanation of all the tax laws & IRS procedures on all tax forms

  1.  Right to Quality Service.

Right to receive prompt, courteous, and professional assistance in all dealings w/ IRS

  1.  Right to Pay No More Than the Correct Amount of Tax.

Right to pay ONLY the amount LEGALLY due

  1. Right to Challenge the IRS’s Position and Be Heard.

Right to raise objections and provide additional documentation in response to formal IRS actions

  1. Right to Appeal an IRS Decision in an Independent Forum.

Right to a fair and impartial appeal of most IRS decisions, right to receive a written response from the office of appeals decision. You also have a right to take your cases to court if you disagree with the appeals decision or bypass the office of appeals and go straight to court. (financial tip: it is much less expensive and faster to go through an appeal than to go to court)

  1.  Right to Finality.

Right to know how much time you have to challenge an IRS position, right to know how much time the IRS has to audit a particular tax year or collect a tax debt, right to know when IRS has finished an audit.

  1. Right to Privacy.

IRS inquiry, examination and enforcement action will comply with the law and be no more intrusive than necessary. Will provide a collection due process hearing (search and seizure protections).

  1. Right to Confidentiality.

Right to expect any information provided to the IRS will not be disclosed unless authorized by the taxpayer or by law.  Action will be taken against IRS employees or tax return preparers who wrongfully use or disclose taxpayer return information.

  1. Right to Retain Representation.

Right to retain an authorized representative of your choice to represent them in dealings with the IRS

  1. Right to a Fair and Just Tax System.

IRS will consider facts and circumstances that affect your liabilities, ability to pay, and ability to provide timely information. Right to receive assistance from the Tax payer Advocate Service if you are experiencing financial difficulty  or if the IRS has not resolved your tax issues properly and timely through normal channels.


The above is a summary of your rights defined in “IRS Publication 1: Your Rights as a Taxpayer”

Publication 1 provides more detail and is available here: