Kansas Becomes First State to Add AI Tax Assistance Chatbot

The state has created an official 24/7 chatbot named Agent Kay that is capable of answering hundreds of questions from residents about WebFile, the state’s full-service online tax filing portal.

by / January 29, 2019

With tax season now upon us, Kansas has gotten some help for its residents, adding a chatbot named Agent Kay to its online tax portal.

Agent Kay is powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and able to answer hundreds of resident questions about WebFile, the state’s online tax filing portal. Agent Kay is, of course, available to help residents with their taxes at any time on any day of the week. Kansas announced the creation of the chatbot Tuesday via Twitter, noting it was the first state to offer tax assistance via AI.

Kansas’ WebFile portal is a joint effort between the Kansas Department of Revenue and the technologists behind Kansas.gov. The site has existed in some form for the past 18 years, undergoing a recent redesigned aimed at making it easier to navigate. In addition to Agent Kay, other new features include mobile responsiveness, better cybersecurity measures and faster refunds.

While Kansas may be the first state to launch a chatbot aimed at helping with taxes, it is far from the first to create a governmental chatbot. In fact, chatbots powered by AI have become increasing common among state and local governments in recent years, performing a wide array of different duties for a variety of disparate agencies. Los Angeles is using a chatbot to help with police recruitment, New York to help its public employees document traffic issues, and North Carolina to answer resident inquiries.