About the Tax Clinic
The School of Law's Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic brings important services to the region. Through the Clinic, selected law students provide free legal representation to low-income taxpayers who have post-filing controversies with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Such disputes might include audit representation, appeals, non-filers, collection issues, innocent spouse relief, and representation before the U.S. Tax Court. In addition to this free legal representation, the students also engage in educational outreach to taxpayers with limited English proficiency, or who speak English as a second language (ESL), about their rights and responsibilities as U.S. taxpayers. Students are supervised by Clinic Director Michelle Drumbl, a former attorney with the IRS Office of Chief Counsel's International group.
The Clinic's serves clients thought the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Clinic operates primarily in the Shenandoah Valley region of Virginia, including the cities of Lexington, Roanoke, Harrisonburg, Staunton, Charlottesville, and Lynchburg.
All of our services are provided free of charge, but due to the federal grant we receive, the Clinic can only provide legal representation to taxpayers whose income does not exceed 250% of the annual Federal Poverty Guidelines (specific amounts for eligibility guidelines are described here). We can, however, provide educational outreach to all ESL taxpayers, regardless of income.
The School of Law's Tax Clinic is partially funded through a matching grant provided by the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic program, which is administered by the Internal Revenue Service's Taxpayer Advocate Service. However, the Clinic is completely independent of, and not associated with, the IRS or the federal government. The partial funding does not imply that the Tax Clinic has a preferential relationship with the IRS.
Please note that the Tax Clinic does not handle transactional tax matters or routine tax return preparation. However, the School of Law also sponsors a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site, which operates independently of the Tax Clinic and provides seasonal preparation of federal income tax returns.
Spring 2012 Student Law Interns. From Left to Right: Michael Humphries, David Krancer, Jessica Unger, Travis Creel, Stephen Holland, Shane Vandenberg, Chloe McDougal. Not Pictured: Curtis Wilson
The Washington and Lee Tax Clinic Complies with IRS Publication 4025 (en español)