What Is IRS Form 2848?

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Dealing with the IRS can be a daunting experience. If you're not a tax professional or an attorney, you may feel more comfortable authorizing someone else to represent you before the IRS. In order to do so, you must complete Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative, and file it with the IRS.

When to Use Form 2848

You should use Form 2848 when you want to authorize somebody else to represent you in front of the IRS and to receive and read your confidential tax information and correspondence. If you'd like to authorize somebody to read and receive your tax return information, but don't want them to represent you, use form 8821.

Choosing an Eligible Representative

Form 2848 requires you to select an individual who is eligible to practice before the IRS. Attorneys, CPAs and enrolled actuaries are all valid examples. Under certain circumstances, a student attorney or CPA may be allowed to represent you before the IRS; Part II of the form must be filled out, and a letter from the Office of Professional Responsibility must be included with it.

Tax Matters

In order to successfully complete form 2848, you must specify the type of tax that will be involved in your communications and dealings with the IRS in section 3; for example, you may specify "income tax" in the appropriate box. The calendar year that your representative will be discussing with the IRS must also be specified; for multiple years, a hyphenated range may be used. If the matter in question isn't restricted to a specific form or tax, you must describe it in detail in the allotted space.

Refund Checks

Section 6 of Form 2848 concerns refund checks. Within this section, you may authorize your representative to receive -- but not endorse -- any refund checks that are intended for you.

Notices and Communications

Section 7 of Form 2848 concerns notices and communications. In this section, you can choose to have correspondence from the IRS sent strictly to you; you can elect to have copies sent to your representative as well.