TAS Helps Disabled Veterans Receive Tax Refunds - Michael Smerig

Success Story: TAS Helps Disabled Veteran Receive Portions of Her Refunds from Three Years

Article Published by: taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov

Every year the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) helps thousands of people with tax problems. This story is only one of many examples of how TAS helps resolve taxpayer issues. All personal details are removed to protect the privacy of the taxpayer.

While participating in a Veterans’ Stand Down event, a married couple, both whom are disabled veterans, approached TAS employees about a tax problem. The taxpayers indicated they had tried to understand and resolve their tax issue for years without success.

The couple indicated they were facing a possible eviction because the IRS had withheld their income tax refund and they didn’t understand why. The TAS employees researched their account and discovered that not only had their current refund been applied to an outstanding tax debt, but the two prior year refunds had been applied too.

Their case was assigned to a case advocate who quickly determined that their refunds had been offset to a joint tax liability stemming from 2013 when the husband veteran had been married to someone else. The case advocate recognized that the veteran’s wife was eligible for an injured spouse allocation. The case advocate guided the wife through the injured spouse claim process and facilitated the issuance of her portion of the refunds for 2014, 2015 and 2016 in less than 30 days. The TAS personnel involved in this case were proud to help these veterans. If you filed a joint tax return, you may be entitled to part or all the refund offset if your spouse is solely responsible for the debt. To request your part of the refund, file IRS Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation.

When working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, each individual or business taxpayer is assigned to an advocate who listens to the problem and helps the taxpayer understand what needs to be done to resolve their tax issue. TAS advocates will do everything they can to help taxpayers and work with them every step of the way. Occasionally TAS features stories of taxpayers and advocates who work together to resolve complex tax issues. Read more TAS success stories.


Michael Smeriglio III is a financial specialist. A licensed CPA since 1985, Mike has been providing tax preparation services to individuals and businesses for more than 30 years through his firm located in Greenwich, CT.