Low Income Taxpayer Clinic Updates
LITC Students Assist in Stimulus Payment Equity
Lewis & Clark Law students at the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic are providing assistance to incarcerated individuals who never received stimulus payments. The issue was first brought to the clinic’s attention by Professor Aliza Kaplan, who directs the Criminal Justice Reform Clinic. Jordan Hartman ’22 handled the bulk of intakes and representation for these cases, but as word spread about this assistance, the increased number of cases are now delegated broadly among all of the LITC students.
To date, the LITC has helped more than 60 clients; so far, clients have received about $20,000. The clinic will continue to help these individuals until the statute of limitations ends in 2026.
Law Students Help Recent Immigrants Obtain Thousands of Dollars in Tax Credits
The LITC has served many immigrants with complex tax issues. In one case, LITC helped a Mexican asylee in an audit challenging her ability to claim the earned income tax credit and child tax credit. Alum Diego Gutierrez ’21 assisted the client by gathering evidence, drafting a compelling narrative, and submitting it to the IRS. The clinic was able to help the taxpayer prevail and obtain more than $9,000 in refunds.
In another case, the LITC helped a Guatemalan asylee who was supporting a child who had just obtained her social security number. The clinic helped her prove that she had earned income for the tax year, resulting in a refund totaling more than $5,000 for the client and her family. Student Karla Márquez de Gaab ’23 assisted the client in gathering evidence, including a letter from her employer, verifying her income.
IRS Funds LITC for Another Three Years
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) awarded funding in support of Lewis & Clark’s Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) for another three years, through 2024. This award represents the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th years of continued IRS support for the clinic; the LITC reapplies for these competitive $300,000 grants every three years.