Topic no. 311, Power of attorney information

You have the right to retain an authorized representative of your choice to represent you in your dealings with the IRS. Refer to IRC § 7803(a)(3)(I). You also have the right to be told that if you cannot afford to hire a representative, you may be eligible for assistance from a Low Income Taxpayer Clinic. Refer to Topic no. 101. You can choose to represent yourself before the IRS, or you may authorize someone to represent you. If you choose to have someone represent you, your representative must be an individual authorized to practice before the IRS. The individual you select does not need to be an attorney, as there are other categories of individuals authorized to practice before the IRS in addition to attorneys.

Submit a power of attorney if you want to authorize an individual to represent you before the IRS. You can use Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative for this purpose. Your signature on the Form 2848 allows the individual or individuals named to represent you before the IRS and to receive your tax information for the matter(s) and tax year(s)/period(s) specified on the Form 2848.

Generally, when you submit a Form 2848, it's included on the IRS's Centralized Authorization File (CAF). The CAF allows IRS personnel who don't have access to the original power of attorney to determine whether you've authorized an individual to represent you. It's important that you fill out the Form 2848 correctly, sign, and date it, to prevent the CAF unit from rejecting it.

Joint filers must execute their own separate power of attorney on Form 2848.

If you want to allow a person to receive your tax information, but don't want this person to represent you before the IRS, refer to Topic no. 312.

For additional information, see the Instructions for Form 2848Publication 947, Practice Before the IRS and Power of Attorney and Publication 1, Your Rights as a Taxpayer.