IRS Launches Contest to Design Futuristic Online Service

Tax Design Challenges launches April 17

How would you like to design a brand new online service for American taxpayers? The IRS is offering a chance to do just that. The tax agency is launching their first-ever Tax Design Challenge. The Tax Design Challenge is a contest through which the participants will submit designs for an online service that helps person find, see, and use their personal tax data. "The goal of this challenge," according to details found at the Tax Design Challenge page at Challenge.gov, "is to reimagine the taxpayer experience and design the taxpayer experience of the future."

The IRS will provide contestants with a description of the tax data that needs to be incorporated into the design. And contestants will have the opportunity to network with mentors from the IRS and the private sector. A launch event is planned for April 17, 2016 in Washington, DC, just one day before this year's tax deadline.

The IRS will award six prizes. The top prize for best overall design is $10,000. The second place carries a $5,000 award. The four additional prizes are for Best Taxpayer usefulness (first place, $2,000; second plan, $1,000) and Best Financial Capability (first place, $2,000; second place, $1,000).

The contest is open to citizens and permanent residents of the United States. Employees of the IRS and the Mortgage Bankers Association, who is co-sponsoring this contest, are not eligible to participate.

Contestants can submit their designs from April 17 through May 10, 2016.

Judging occurs from May 23 through June 3, 2016.

For further details, see the Tax Design Challenge page at Challenge.gov. Requirements and procedures are detailed in the notice published in the Federal Register (81 FR 15413).