by Valerie Yingling
From the Editor: Besides the extension for the President and perhaps the Independence Market, I suspect that none rings more than the one for Valerie. National representatives say it repeatedly as the digits to dial to report an act of discrimination, inquire about with whom to talk about a potential case, or to give your thoughts about a current survey. Extension 2440 is magic, not because of the digits but because of the kind, courteous, and competent person taking the calls. Here is the latest contribution from Valerie, just in time for tax season:
Good news from the IRS is always welcome, including that a key term in the NFB’s 2020 settlement agreement with the IRS is now available to blind taxpayers. IRS Form 9000: Alternative Media Preference is newly available for requesting notices from the IRS in large print, Braille, MP3 audio file, plain text file, or Braille ready file.
Taxpayers can submit Form 9000 with their tax return, or can mail the form in as a stand-alone document. Important instructions at https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-access/f9000_accessible.pdf, following the form, include the mailing address and how to complete the form depending on your method of submission.
As identified in the NFB’s agreement, taxpayers are not limited to the formats listed on Form 9000. Requests for other formats will be evaluated under requirements in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
Furthermore, taxpayers are not required to use Form 9000, but can instead request alternative format communication from the IRS by telephone: 800-829-1040. Also, taxpayers may change their request at any time. It may take two weeks or longer for the IRS to process the alternative format request, depending on the requesting method. In the interim, taxpayers can call the same number (800-829-1040) for assistance with print communication they receive from the IRS.
These developments are important, and we expect that they will prevent situations in which inaccessible notices lead to unknown fees and penalties. As President Riccobono stated in 2020, “We are pleased that the IRS has recognized that both the law and fundamental fairness demand that blind taxpayers receive notices that we can read and act upon while protecting our privacy and preserving our independence.”
NFB members should also note that per the settlement:
For more information, please visit: