WASHINGTON -- Taxpayers who receive unfair treatment from the Internal Revenue Service should be eligible for $1,000 "apology payments" from the IRS, the agency's own taxpayer advocate proposed Wednesday.

In a special report to Congress following the IRS's targeting of political groups for special scrutiny, National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson said the tax agency's Exempt Organizations unit trampled on eight of 10 rights in her Taxpayers Bill of Rights.

"Today, the IRS is an institution in crisis," wrote Olson, who heads a semi-independent unit of the IRS that looks out for taxpayer interests. "As a consequence of this crisis, the IRS gives limited consideration to taxpayer rights or fundamental tax administration principles as it struggles to get its job done."