The Constitution gives Congress the power to tax. Congress typically enacts Federal tax law in the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (IRC).

The sections of the IRC can be found in Title 26 of the United States Code (26 USC). An electronic version of the current United States Code is made available to the public by Congress.

Browse "Title 26—Internal Revenue Code" to see the table of contents for the IRC.
"Jump To" to a specific section of Title 26 to find the text for that IRC provision. For example, you can "Jump To" Title 26 Section 24 to find the provision for the child tax credit in the IRC.
Use the Advanced Search feature to search only in Title 26 for a specific term. For example, you can search for "child tax credit" in Title 26 to find section 24 of the IRC, shown as 26 USC 24.

Caution: Before relying on any IRC section retrieved from this or any other website, check to see whether the provision that’s displayed shows laws that became effective after the tax year you’re researching. It’s also possible that updates from a recent law haven’t yet been reflected in the provision. Additionally, sometimes Congress enacts laws that are not part of the IRC but nonetheless impact Federal tax law. Historical versions of the United States Code (back to 1994) are available electronically on GovInfo, a website from the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO).

The IRC is complex, and its sections must be read in the context of the entire Code, the Treasury Regulations, and the court decisions that interpret it.

Since shortly after the federal income tax was enacted in 1913, some individuals and groups have encouraged others not to comply with the tax laws. There have been unsuccessful challenges about the applicability of tax laws using a variety of arguments. Despite the courts having consistently rejected these arguments, their promoters continue to expound them, even incurring penalties for bringing frivolous cases into court or for filing frivolous tax returns. They often present their arguments in a pseudo-legal format, luring unsuspecting people into participating in their schemes to evade taxes Do not be misled by the false interpretations of the IRC promoted by the purveyors of anti-tax law evasion schemes.