As a tax preparer, maintaining a thorough record of resources is vital for efficiency and achievement in your role. In addition to necessary and potentially frequent contact with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) via phone, you will likely need to establish connections with other tools and websites that contribute to your success as a tax professional. At Drake Software, we want to ensure you are resourced with the information you need to make those connections, especially with the IRS, and additional, practical assets to your business.
IRS Phone Number & Website
The IRS is outfitted with many serviceable resources that tax preparers can access on the IRS website or by phone call. You may encounter a myriad of situations as a tax professional that would prompt you to contact the IRS such as:
- Clarification on tax regulations: Tax laws can be highly intensive and frequently changed. Whether you need a more explicit explanation of a tax code, deduction, or reporting requirement, contacting the IRS is one method to ensure compliance in your work.
- Resolving errors: Occasionally, you may confront discrepancies during the filing process, such as rejected returns, incorrect assessments, or inaccuracies in reported income. In such cases, the IRS can provide guidance on how to correct these mistakes.
- Taxpayer inquiries: Tax preparers may seek additional information from the IRS to gather details about a client’s tax account, such as their payment history, outstanding charges, or previous returns. This data is essential for completing a client’s tax preparation and comprehending any potential client implications.
Regardless of the circumstances, the IRS can aid with many compulsory issues that arise in your work as a tax preparer. To reach the IRS via phone call as a business, you can simply dial 800-829-8374. Please note that to call on behalf of someone else as a third party, you will need the information below.
- Authorization to discuss the account, either verbal or written
- The name, SSN, or ITIN of the taxpayer
- The specific tax return you're calling about
- Valid Form 8821, Tax Information Authorization or Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative
- Preparer tax identification number or personal identification number
When opting to call an IRS telephone assistor, it’s important to remember there are some subjects that are too complex to be addressed via phone. You can locate a more detailed list of such subjects here that require an alternative course of action.
Moreover, by navigating to the IRS “Tax Pros” webpage, you can find even more information about phone services available to tax preparers. The IRS’ Practitioner Priority Service (PPS) is the primary point of contact for tax preparers to reach the IRS with account-related issues. By calling 1-866-860-4259, tax preparers have access to personalized support from IRS representatives who are specifically trained to assist tax professionals. This advocate phone line ensures that tax preparers receive assistance promptly, ultimately streamlining your interactions with the IRS.
As for the IRS website, tax preparers can access a range of other beneficial resources. The Forms and Publications section extensively lists every form that a tax preparer may need to provide return services. You may also benefit from subscribing to e-News for Tax Professionals, which distributes consistent updates on tax laws, regulations, and guidance directly to your inbox. Finally, the IRS recommends a plethora of online e-Services that are available to tax preparers for their convenience and success.
Overall, the phone lines and webpages tendered by the IRS are valuable resources that can help provide timely and pertinent information for tax professionals. We recommend navigating back to the IRS “Tax Pros” webpage as a baseline measure for any questions or issues that arise in your career as a tax preparer.
Taxpayer Advocate Services (TAS)
Taxpayer advocates help represent the best interests of taxpayers and tax professionals as they communicate with the IRS. Working independently of the IRS, taxpayer advocates help ensure that all constituents of the IRS receive fair treatment. To contact tayxpayer advocates, tax preparers can visit the IRS website and navigate to the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) webpage.
Unsure of what scenarios warrant contacting TAS? Read below for some examples of how you might interact with taxpayer advocates as a tax preparer.
1. Resolving Complex Tax Issues.
If you encounter challenging or recurring tax issues, TAS is available to intervene and generate a resolution. Some examples include prolonged delays in salient processing or incorrect tax assessments, but their website includes a search engine for seeking help on specific topics, no matter what you may experience.
2. Facilitating Communication.
Sometimes, especially in arduous cases that require specialized knowledge, communication with the IRS can become difficult or unresolved. TAS serves as a liaison between tax preparers and the IRS, helping to expedite or encourage communication and ensure that any inquiries are promptly and appropriately addressed.
3. Advocating for Taxpayer Rights.
TAS in part exists to guard your rights as a tax preparer and guarantee equitable treatment by the IRS. They are knowledgeable of proper procedures during the tax preparation process and can help you enforce your clients’ rights throughout the return process. In the event you suspect a client’s rights have not been honored, you can contact TAS to advocate for your client to the IRS.
TAS offers many helpful resources for tax preparers that, although separate from the IRS, can compound with what the IRS offers to create a network of tools for your services as a professional. Tax advocates can ultimately aid tax preparers in providing an egalitarian experience for clients and navigating any potential, specialized challenges.
A Few Extra Resources
At Drake Software, we pride ourselves on supplying you with the information and tools you need to be successful in your business ventures as a tax professional. In alignment with that value, we’ve outlined a few additional points of contact so that you have a versatile record of sources of help.
- Professional Tax Organizations.
Professional organizations for tax preparers, such as the National Association of Tax Professionals (NATP) or the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA), are membership-oriented groups that can provide an extra line of communication for any issues you have or resources you may need. Seeking membership can provide networking benefits, such as knowledge sharing and mentor support. Many related organizations, including Drake Software, also attend conferences and trade shows that specifically target learning opportunities for industry trends and best practices in areas of uncertainty.
- Online Tax Forums and Communities.
Engaging with other tax professionals via forums also opens communication across various channels that serve to contribute to your career as a tax preparer. One example of these online platforms is TaxAlmanac which provides a common space for professionals to share their knowledge and post answers to public questions. Since the information shared across these boards is largely subjective, we recommend exercising caution and taking steps to verify any information that is shared; however, these forums can serve as an excellent starting point for seeking assistance with role-related issues as a tax preparer.
- Drake Software Support
In addition to our online blog that seeks to provide accessible and intelligible information to tax preparers, we also offer Drake Support via phone and email for users of our software. We are honored to serve you by offering software that is user-friendly, comprehensive, and practical so that you can focus on what matters most in your role – serving your clients and seeing your business flourish.
As a tax preparer, your primary aim is servicing your clients with tax preparation that is accurate, reliable, and efficient. Having a structure to house your resource contacts, including the IRS, the Taxpayer Advocate Service, and other online tools, will elevate your capacity to receive interconnected and well-informed support. In utilizing these resources, you can strengthen your expertise as a tax preparer, revitalize your service offerings, and effectively navigate any related issues in your role.