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Enrolled Agents are America’s Tax Experts!

An IRS enrolled agent (EA) is a person who has earned the privilege of representing taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service by either passing a three-part comprehensive IRS test covering individual and business tax returns or through experience as a former IRS employee. All candidates are subjected to a rigorous background check conducted by the IRS.

Enrolled agent status is the highest credential the IRS awards. Individuals who obtain this elite status must adhere to ethical standards and complete 72 hours of continuing education courses every three years. Because of the expertise necessary to become an enrolled agent and the requirements to maintain the license, there are less than 50,000 practicing enrolled agents worldwide.

Enrolled agents, like attorneys and certified public accountants (CPAs), are unrestricted as to which taxpayers they can represent, what types of tax matters they can handle, and which IRS offices they can represent clients before. Learn more about enrolled agents in Treasury Department Circular 230.

The big advantage that you get by using an EA to do your tax return is that the same team that handles the preparation of the return can represent you if you are audited.  This can be a big advantage if your return is at all complicated.

What is an enrolled agent with the IRS?

“Enrolled” means to be licensed to practice by the federal government, and “Agent” means authorized to appear in the place of the taxpayer at the IRS. Only enrolled agents, attorneys, and CPAs have unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before the IRS. The enrolled agent profession dates back to 1884 when, after questionable claims had been presented for Civil War losses, Congress acted to regulate persons who represented citizens in their dealings with the U.S. Treasury Department.

How can an enrolled agent help me?

IRS enrolled agents advise, represent, and prepare tax returns for individuals, partnerships, corporations, estates, trusts, and any entities with tax-reporting requirements. Enrolled agents’ expertise in the continually changing field of taxation enables them to effectively represent taxpayers at all administrative levels within the IRS.

Privilege and the enrolled agent

The IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998 allow federally authorized practitioners (those bound by the Department of Treasury’s Circular 230 regulations) a limited client privilege. This privilege allows confidentiality between the taxpayer and the enrolled agent under certain conditions. The privilege applies to situations in which the taxpayer is being represented in cases involving audits and collection matters. It does not apply to the preparation and filing of a tax return. This privilege does not apply to state tax matters, although some states have an accountant-client privilege.

Enrolled agent vs CPA – what are the differences?

Only enrolled agents are required to demonstrate to the IRS their competence in all areas of taxation, representation, and ethics before they are given unlimited representation rights before IRS.

Certified Public Accountants (CPA) are state-licensed, specializing in accounting, and may or may not choose to specialize in taxes. Unlike attorneys and CPAs, all enrolled agents specialize in taxation.

Are enrolled agents bound by any ethical standards?

Enrolled agents are required to abide by the provisions of the Department of Treasury’s Circular 230, which provides the regulations governing the practice of enrolled agents before the IRS.

Our goal at Peace Of Mind Tax Help is to provide the best counsel, advocacy, and personal service for our clients. We are not only tax resolution and representation experts but strive to become valued business partners. Peace Of Mind Tax Help is committed to understanding our client’s unique needs; every tax situation is different and requires a personal approach in providing realistic and effective solutions.