Taxpayer defense institute

A National Association of Tax Professionals
In Defense of Taxpayers’ Rights

Taxpayers Defense Institute logo

Our Mission, Purposes and Goals

Taxpayers Defense Institute has had two specific goals from its inception. They are, 1) the education of its members, and 2) the creation of a top-tier network of like-minded tax pros to get the benefit of one another’s knowledge, insight and experience. Here’s how we accomplish our goals.

1. Education. Our educational efforts are targeted specifically at taxpayers’ rights issues, IRS abuse prevention and cure, and problems resolution cases. We do not deal with what might be termed the “everyday” aspect of accounting, bookkeeping or return preparation, although many of our members are tax return preparers. TDI deals with the issues that cause real problems for tens of millions of Americans every year. Essential education in these critical areas is simply not available at this quality level from any other organization in the nation—bar none!

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Our focus is therefore on the enforcement aspects of the tax law. We deal with audits, appeals, penalty and interest assessments, Collection Due Process appeals, refund claims, computer notices, Innocent Spouse cases, employment tax matters including the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty, collection matters including Offers in Compromise, Installment Agreements and “hardship” determinations, Tax Court litigation of every description, tax related bankruptcies, and all other enforcement issues.

The educational material is written by Dan Pilla. It forms the basis of what every tax professional must know to effectively represent clients in trouble with the IRS. Dan literally “wrote the book” on penalty abatement, Offers in Compromise, Collect Due Process appeals, and audit and appeals practices. His techniques are sound, based squarely upon the law, and most importantly, they work. The procedures Dan teaches are the kind of thing you simply do not get any place else.

Each year, our Taxpayers Defense Conference draws professionals from around the nation who become informed and inspired by Dan’s live presentations of the latest nuances to IRS procedures and relevant tax law changes. These two-day conferences are attended by attorneys, accountants, enrolled agents and unenrolled tax preparers with a hunger to learn more about how to protect their clients in the ever-changing world of IRS compliance and problems resolution.

2.  Networking. Our TFI members are among the very best of the best when it comes to IRS problems resolution work. And they carry another, very unique and important attribute: they are willing and able to share their experience, guidance insight with other members–regularly. 

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As a TDI member, you’ll have unlimited access to all our members through our email list-serve and members’ contact information. This is how our members exchange advice, ideas, strategies and guidance on a daily basis. This gives you the ability to interact, at any time, with our members who work on problems resolution cases every day. Our membership consists of some of the finest attorneys, CPAs and enrolled agents in the country, many of whom have been TDI members for over 20 years. A number have been members since we started in 1993. This gives you direct access to a team of people with first-hand experience in dealing with the IRS at every level.

And that’s not all. As a TDI member, you’ll have direct, personal access to Dan Pilla. You’re entitled to call Dan directly whenever you need specific help, guidance, ideas, or just a second opinion on one of your cases. And it doesn’t matter what kind of case it is. Whether it’s an audit, appeal, Tax Court case, Collection Due Process appeal, Trust Fund Recovery Penalty, or any other IRS enforcement issue you can name, Dan has seen—and done—it all.

The tax code now consists of more than 4 millions words (not even including the regulations) and was changed more than 5,900 times since 2001, and that doesn’t count the hundreds of changes made during 2020. There’s just too much to know when it comes to dealing with the IRS. That’s why it’s vital that you don’t try to go it alone. That’s why you need a team to rely on.


What would it be worth to you and your practice to have direct access to a team of tax pros who have focused on this work for decades?

This kind of networking gives you the confidence to take on any challenge and know that you’ll be able to provide effective representation to your clients.

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What We Do So You’re Always on Top

Is It Important For You To Be On the Cutting Edge Of Taxpayers’ Rights Issues?

With your TDI Membership, you’re always among the first to know about the latest, most effective Problem Solving Strategies.

We keep a constant watch on what’s happening in the U.S. district courts and the U.S. Tax Court when it comes to taxpayers’ rights issues and problems resolution strategies. We watch the IRS for changes in regulations, revenue procedures, IRS manual provisions, enforcement initiatives and other administrative guidance. We constantly update the information you need to deal with the agency so you can effectively represent your clients in every area of tax law enforcement.

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Areas include:

  • Audits and appeals,
  • Collection enforcement such as liens, levies and seizures,
  • Collection defense matters such as installment agreements, Offers in Compromise, innocent spouse claims and Collection Due Process appeals,
  • Correspondence problems including error and adjustment notices,
  • Penalties and interest assessments and abatements,
  • Criminal investigations and prosecutions,
  • Tax-motivated bankruptcies,
  • Civil and criminal administrative summons defense and enforcement issues,
  • Procedural issues for the US district courts and the US Tax Court,
  • Small business audit and collection issues,
  • Tax shelter enforcement,
  • Employment tax issues, including assessments and appeals related to the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty,
  • Independent contractor disputes,
  • Administrative and judicial refund and abatement claims,
  • Mediation and Arbitration issues both within the IRS and the US Tax Court,
  • Recovery of professional fees and costs, and more.

Congress passes tax legislation at an ever-faster rate. Even worse, the scope of each legislative package gets broader all the time.

We  watch Congress for tax and other legislation that has an impact on how you deal with your clients. Examples include,

  • Omnibus revenue reconciliation laws,
  • Tax reform measures,
  • Financial compliance and information reporting laws,
  • Bankruptcy legislation and how it impacts collection defense, etc.

Your TDI membership brings you real time updates on trends in enforcement directly from Dan Pilla and our professional members. You’ll get feedback on the strategies that work and those that don’t, what to expect from the IRS in any situation and expert input from some of the nation’s top tax professionals with experience in every area of tax law enforcement and administration, both within the IRS itself and in the courts. 

Never again will you have to speculate about how to handle a given situation.

You’ll have the confidence to handle any situation you face.  Even if you’re a highly experienced tax professional, you’ll benefit from our team of tax professionals.

  • Accounting and return preparation experts,
  • Practitioners with expertise in audits and appeals,
  • Tax Court litigators,
  • Criminal defense attorneys and
  • Bankruptcy attorneys.

Do you agree that these are important assets to have on your side? Then Join Now to become a member of our team. We’ll help you navigate the muddy and dangerous waters tax law enforcement.

Our Founder and History

Get access to the man who started the Tax Litigation Industry with his book on Tax Debt Forgiveness.

Taxpayers Defense Institute, formally known as Tax Freedom Institute (TFI), was founded in 1993 by Daniel J. Pilla.  Dan realized there were very few in the tax industry that knew how to fight for the taxpayer against the IRS and it became his mission to educate tax professionals to succesfully represent their clients  before the IRS.

Dan Pilla, a Tax Litigation Consultant and U.S. Tax Court Practitioner, is widely recognized as the nation’s leading expert in IRS procedures and taxpayers’ rights. He is the author of over fifteen books on dealing with the IRS, including Dan Pilla’s Small Business Tax Guide, How to Win Your Tax Audit and the IRS Problem Solver.  His book,  How to Get Tax Amnesty,  was instrumental in the start of the tax resolution industry.

The Taxpayers Defense Institute Advisory Board

Daniel J. Pilla - Founder


Dan is an Enrolled Agent and Tax Litigation Consultant admitted to practice before the United States Tax Court.  Dan, located in Minnesota,  works with clients throughout the Untied States.  With over forty years experience in dealing with the IRS at every level, Dan’s motto is “There is no such thing as a hopeless tax problem.”

Dan is the founder and executive director of the Taxpayers Defense Institute.

Donald W. "Mac" MacPherson
Donad W. "Mac" MacPherson - Attorney

 Mac is a practicing attorney located in southern California.  Mac has over forty years experience as a trial and appellate attorney in criminal and civil IRS defense work, trying over fifty criminal tax cases in twenty-four states.

A West Point graduate and former Green Beret officer, and written three books and dozens of scholarly articles on the IRS, federal court procedure and bankruptcy procedure.

Mac is a charter Consulting Member of the Taxpayers Defense Institute and has been on the Advisory Board from the inception.

Steven N. Klitzer - Attorney


Steve is tax attorney from Miami, Florida.  Steve, a Consulting Member of Taxpayers Defense Institute since 2003, was added to our Advisory Board in 2016.

Steve is a frequent contributor to the Pilla Talks Taxes newsletter and is a regular speaker at our annual Taxpayers Defense Conference. Along with his great insights and experience in tax resolution issues, Steve brings a wonderful sense of humor to all his presentations.

Patricia L. Gentile Attorney, CPA
Patricia Gentile - Attorney, CPA

 Pattie is a CPA and attorney from Boston, MA. with over 30 years of experience working with individuals and small businesses. She specializes in taxpayer defense, taxpayers’ rights and IRS problems resolution cases and does tax return preparation for hundreds of individuals and small businesses every year.

Pattie is a charter Consulting Member of the Taxpayers Defense Institute. Her only break from the organization since her membership began in 1994 was to take time off to go to law school. She is a past presenter at our annual Taxpayers Defense Conference and regular contributor to our daily e-mail exchanges.

Do you want the top tax professionals in the nation on your side? Then Join Now to become a member of our team. We’ll help you navigate the muddy and dangerous waters tax law enforcement.

We receive a steady stream of testimonial letters from attorneys, accountants and enrolled agents who have used Dan’s materials with great success. 

 “I highly recommend a set of these books for any attorney, certified public accountant or other professional who represents clients before the IRS.”   –  James C. –  Attorney with over twenty-five years as a member of Taxpayers Defense Institute.

“I don’t know why I waited so long to join TDI. I am so glad to be part of the group and so appreciate your help and your wisdom. I would not have the skills I have today without all the knowledge I gained from reading your books.”   – Greg B. – Enrolled Agent

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