Just a few weeks remain until Pope Francis’ historic visit to Philadelphia. It’s not only Pope Francis’ first time in Philadelphia but his first official visit to the U.S. While the Pope will also be making stops in Washington, D.C. and New York City, the focus of his visit is the City of Brotherly Love where he will be offering Mass for the conclusion of the World Meeting of Families on Sunday, September 27. The Mass, which is open to the public, will be held outside the Philadelphia Art Museum and folks are expected to line up along the mile long avenue.
Estimates for the crowd hoping to take Mass on the Parkway have ranged from thousands to millions. If similar events are any indication, the latter is likely the case: in January, Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi reported that between six and seven million people attended a Mass held by the Pope in Manila. Recent estimates have put the number of visitors to the City in anticipation of the Pope’s visit at 1.5 million.
To help visitors navigate what promises to be a packed series of events, the Secret Service has released a guide (downloads as a pdf), complete with a map showing the areas that will be off limits to those without special tickets. Those areas? Most of the city. Roads will be closed and public transit will not run in select locations. As a result, Mayor Nutter is asking businesses to rethink whether it’s necessary to have employees come into work. Courts have already made the decision for employees as well as lawyers and interested parties: courts will close at 5 p.m. on September 22 and will not reopen until 9 a.m. on September 29. That includes the First Judicial District, Municipal, Common Pleas, Orphans, Civil and Criminal court operations.
So what does that mean for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)? Because of restricted access to the building, services at the Internal Revenue Service’s Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC) at 600 Arch Street in Philadelphia will be unavailable September 25 and 28. Area taxpayers needing face-to-face help on federal tax matters can visit the IRS TACs listed below:
200 Lakeside Dr.
Horsham, PA 19044
Monday-Friday – 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
(Closed for lunch 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.)
King of Prussia
601 South Henderson Rd.
King of Prussia, PA 19406
Monday-Friday – 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
(Closed for lunch 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.)
1400 N. Providence Rd.
Media, PA 19063
Monday-Friday – 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
(Closed for lunch 1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.)
Be sure to check out road closures and public transit restrictions before heading out. Portions of major highways, including I-76, I-676 and Rt. 1 will be shut down.
Additionally, the IRS reminds taxpayers who plan to visit an IRS office to first check the hours and services offered at that location. Services at IRS offices vary, may be limited or unavailable. Hours of operation and available services for all TACs are listed at www.irs.gov/localcontacts.
The IRS also reminds taxpayers that they can often get needed tax information or resolve a tax problem without having to call or visit an IRS office. The IRS website provides many of the same services available at a TAC, including the ability to request copies of tax transcripts, check the status of a tax refund or get answers to common tax law questions.


Kelly Erb is a tax attorney, tax writer and podcaster.

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