Nina E. Olson, the National Taxpayer Advocate (NTA), has announced her decision to retire this summer from the esteemed NTA position at the IRS. Olson has served as taxpayers’ “voice” within the IRS and before Congress for the last 18 years.

Olson will retire from the position of NTA on July 31, 2019, according to a recent NTA Blog post. “I am making the announcement now because I want to prepare the Taxpayer Advocate Service for a smooth transition, and I want to participate in the selection of my successor,” Olson wrote.

Critical and Priority Items Lists

Olson outlined the following “critical items” she wants to accomplish before retiring:

  • publish new IRM chapters on Taxpayer Assistance Orders and Taxpayer Advocate Directives;
  • finalize a regulation governing the operations of Low Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITC); and
  • regain the ability to hire attorney-advisors.

Additionally, Olson has created a list of “priority items” for the IRS, which IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig requested. The list includes:

  • developing an automated economic hardship risk indicator;
  • developing mandatory employee training on the Taxpayer Bill of Rights;
  • developing guidance and training on the identification and public disclosure of Program Manager Technical Advice (PMTA) memoranda; and
  • designing rights-based notices of deficiency, collection due process hearing notices, and math error notices.

“Underlying all my actions and plans as the National Taxpayer Advocate has been a recognition that the Taxpayer Advocate Service is more than an organization – however independent – within a bureaucratic federal agency,” Olson wrote. “The Taxpayer Advocate Service is a concept – an idea. It represents the proposition that taxpayers have rights and protections before the awesome taxation powers of the United States.”