A partnership must designate a partnership representative on its tax return for each taxable year unless it makes a valid election out of the centralized partnership audit regime. The designation of a partnership representative for one taxable year is effective only for that taxable year. The partnership representative must have a substantial presence in the United States. 

Authority of the Partnership Representative

The partnership representative has the sole authority to act on behalf of the partnership for purposes of Bipartisan Budget Act (BBA) partnership audit procedures. The partnership and the partners are bound by the actions of the partnership representative under the BBA. The partnership representative is comparable to the Tax Matters Partner under the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 1982 (TEFRA) but has more authority.

Actions of the Partnership Representative

The actions of the partnership representative on behalf of the partnership and the partners under subchapter C of chapter 63 of the Internal Revenue Code include but are not limited to:

  • Entering into a settlement agreement
  • Agreeing to a notice of final partnership adjustment (FPA)
  • Requesting modification of an imputed underpayment
  • Extending the modification period by agreement
  • Waiving the modification period
  • Agreeing to adjustments and waiving the FPA
  • Extending the statutory periods for making adjustments by agreement
  • Making a push out election

Who is Eligible

A partnership may designate any person, an entity or itself as a PR, but they are required to have a substantial presence in the United States.

If an entity is designated as a PR: the partnership must also appoint a designated individual to act on the entity’s behalf. The designated individual must also have a substantial presence in the U.S. In this guidance, any reference to the partnership representative includes the designated individual.

Substantial Presence

For a partnership representative or designated individual to have substantial presence in the United States, all the following must be true:

  1. The entity/individual has a U.S. taxpayer identification number.
  2. The entity/individual has a U.S. street address and a telephone number with a U.S. area code.
  3. The partnership representative or designated individual acting on behalf of an entity partnership representative makes themselves available to meet in person with the IRS in the United States at a reasonable time and place as determined by the IRS in accordance with Treasury Regulation § 301.7605-1.

How to Designate a Partnership Representative

A partnership representative must be designated for each respective year on the partnership’s return. Enter the partnership representative name, U.S. address and phone number on:

There can only be one partnership representative at any time during the tax year. The designated partnership representative remains in effect until the designation is terminated by a valid revocation, a valid resignation, or a determination by the IRS that the designation is not in effect.

How to Change the Partnership Representative

Use Form 8979, Partnership Representative Revocation, Designation and Resignation to make changes to a partnership representative or designated individual. The partnership may alert the IRS that it has revoked the partnership representative at certain times using Form 8979 or a partnership representative or designated individual can resign using Form 8979.

Never mail separately or fax (by itself, as a stand-alone filing) to the IRS — Form 8979, Partnership Representative Revocation, Designation, and Resignation.

Caution: Form 8979 should only be filed as discussed below.

If Form 8979 submitted by a partnership:

  1. Directly to the current IRS employee point of contact (for example, revenue agent, appeals officer, counsel) after the issuance of either a notice of selection for examination (Letter 2205-D) or a notice of administrative proceeding (Letter 5893 or Letter 5893-A);
  2.  With a valid, filed Administrative Adjustment Request (AAR) (filed for a reason other than just for making a revocation) prior to the issuance of Letter 2205-D, Letter 5893, or Letter 5893-A;
  3. With a Form 8985, Pass-Through Statement — Transmittal/Partnership Adjustment Tracking Report, submitted by a pass-through partnership that has not elected out of BBA;
    Note: See the Instructions for Form 8985 for how to submit in response to an exam versus an AAR filing.
  4. With Form 8988, Election for Alternative to Payment of the Imputed Underpayment - IRC Section 6226; or
  5. With Form 921-M, Consent Fixing Period of Limitation to Make Partnership Adjustments (attach Form 8979 to the statute extension and return it to the IRS point of contact).

If submitted by a partnership representative or a designated individual, Form 8979 should only be submitted directly to the current IRS employee point of contact after the issuance of Letter 2205-D, Letter 5893, or Letter 5893-A.

Note. If a newly designated PR for a BBA partnership wants to appoint a person as power of attorney to represent the PR in its capacity of PR for the BBA partnership, it must submit a Form 2848. This must be done even if that person was previously appointed power of attorney by a prior PR of the same partnership and year. Therefore, a new PR that wants to retain a prior power of attorney should not check the box on line 6 and should submit a new Form 2848 appointing the prior power of attorney.


Return to BBA Centralized Partnership Audit Regime


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  • BBA Centralized Partnership Audit Regime
  • Designate a Partnership Representative
  • Elect Out of the Centralized Partnership Audit Regime
  • File an Administrative Adjustment Request under Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (BBA)
  • BBA Partnership Audit Process
  • Electronic Submission of Forms by Audited BBA Partnerships and their Pass Through Partners
  • OFSS Status (when unavailable due to scheduled or unscheduled maintenance)