Professor Robert Nassau Speaks with the AP on the IRS’s Phone Help System

In a recent Associated Press article, Please hold: Pricey way to jump IRS phone line at tax time, director of the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic, Robert G. Nassau comments on the challenges of trying to contact the IRS and how companies like enQ provide quick access to a free government service by charging extra money to guarantee a lower hold time. “It doesn’t seem fair that when it comes to the IRS, you’re basically buying better access to the service and getting faster access,” Nassau said. “Eventually we get through and it may take several more days.”

The article explained how enQ uses bots to wait for the IRS, and then enQ’s clients can dial in and swap spots with the bot to automatically be at the front of the line. “I can’t tell for certain how much harder it has made it for people like me to get through,” Nassau said, “but these bots are probably trying to call the same number that I’m trying to call.”