When a taxpayer contacts the Clinic, the taxpayer is first interviewed over the phone to determine if his or her case meets the requirements of the Clinic.

If the taxpayer's situation meets these requirements, the taxpayer is called in for a formal interview with the Student Representative. If the case is complex or controversial, the Director may attend the interview. During the interview, the student representative discovers the facts in order to make a recommendation to the Director whether to accept the taxpayer as a client. If the Director determines that the nature of the taxpayer's tax problem is appropriate for the Clinic to consider, that the taxpayer satisfies the "taxpayer eligibility guidelines", and that the taxpayer is committed to assisting the Clinic in resolving his case, the Director formally accepts the taxpayer as a client of the Clinic by executing a Client Agreement.

The student representative begins serving the client by obtaining a Power of Attorney, Form 2848, from the client authorizing the student and the Director to represent the taxpayer in front of the Internal Revenue Service. The student representative will review the facts of the case, identify evidence needed, assist the client to obtain the evidence, research the law, apply the facts to the law, obtain tax transcripts from the Internal Revenue Service, and establish a plan for the taxpayer to resolve his or her tax dispute. This usually involves communicating with representatives of the Internal Revenue Service by telephone, by mail, by fax and in person.

With the client's consent, the student representative works with the Internal Revenue Service to resolve the dispute from the beginning to the end of the case. If the case cannot be resolved within the semester by the student representative assigned to the case, the case will be transferred to a new student representative the following semester.

During times when there are no classes, the Director of the Clinic assumes complete responsibility for the client's case activity.


Although nominal fees may be charged, the Clinic does not generally charge any fees for services. However, court costs, various filing fees, and certain administrative costs may be charged to the client.

Client Request Form

Please review our detailed eligibility guidelines to see if you qualify for our services. If you are in need of assistance, please fill out our Application Form. The information we request will better enable us to determine if our clinic can provide you with meaningful assistance.

Once we have received the information we will attempt to schedule a meeting with you as soon as possible thereafter. All clients are required to attend a meeting in our clinic office location.

If you have any questions, please call the Clinic office at 312-915-7176.

Documents can be faxed to us at 312-915-7837.

Client Services Offered

The Clinic provides all necessary services to completely resolve an individual's federal tax problem. The Clinic's services are split into two regimes.

Pre-Assessment Cases

In pre-assessment situations, the clinic is generally involved in contesting a deficiency proposed by the IRS during an examination of the client's return. Depending on the procedural posture of the case, a student representative will call or meet with agents from the Internal Revenue Service to discuss the tax issue, write an appeal from the 30-day letter, or prepare a petition to Tax Court in response to the 90-day proposed deficiency letter. The Clinic has prepared a number of cases for Tax Court; however, a large majority of cases settle prior to trial.

Post-Assessment Cases

In post-assessment situations, the Clinic is generally involved in dealing with taxpayers' collection issues. As with all cases, the Clinic first determines a taxpayer's options for dealing with the tax liability. To accomplish this, the Clinic prepares a Form 433-A financial statement of the taxpayer. Based upon the calculations from the financial statement, the taxpayer's options are more narrowly defined. With respect to the tax liability, the Clinic advises the taxpayer as to the suggested course of action. Based upon the taxpayer's response, the Clinic may negotiate with the IRS to have them accept an Installment Agreement, accept a Form 656 Offer in Compromise or, if appropriate, place the client into "currently uncollectible" status . The Clinic also handles taxpayer matters by filing Form 8857 seeking innocent spouse relief.

Eligibility Guidelines

The Clinic has always imposed certain requirements which potential taxpayers must meet before they can be accepted as clients. In 1999, the Clinic applied to the IRS for (and did in fact receive) a grant; the Clinic modified its own guidelines to accept the IRS "income level" and "amount in controversy" guidelines. There are currently five requirements for taxpayers to satisfy to become accepted as clients of the Clinic.

Our e-mail address is law-taxclinic@luc.edu.

Persons in family/household 48 States & DC 
1 $31,225
2 $42,275
3 $53,325
4 $64,375
5 $74,425

Income Level

The client’s income must be less than 250% of the current Health and Human Services (HHS) poverty guidelines.

Amount in Controversy

In addition to the income requirement, the Clinic also requires the amount in controversy to be reasonable. The clinic requires that the amount in controversy not exceed $50,000 per taxable year.

Subject Matter

The clinic focuses its assistance on individuals (not partnerships or corporations) with federal income tax issues. Assistance is offered to individuals with cases before the Internal Revenue Service and those who have filed a petition with the U.S. Tax Court or who expect to do so. The clinic refuses cases involving criminal tax proceedings and does not prepare original tax returns.

Geographical Location

The clinic does not impose geographic limitations on taxpayers. However, the taxpayer must be able to travel to the clinic for interviews, negotiations, administrative proceedings, and court appearances.

Resolution Capability

The taxpayer’s case must be capable of resolution by the student representative with guidance from the director.