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Enrolled agents occupy a unique space in the federal tax landscape as the only federally-licensed tax practitioners who specialize in taxation and have unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before IRS. As a result, enrolled agents have in-depth knowledge and experience with both tax administration and tax policy. The goal of the NAEA advocacy program is to use that knowledge and experience to improve the tax system for all involved. The congressional fly-in is one way NAEA members communicate that knowledge and experience directly to the leaders making tax policy decisions.

The 2019 NAEA Fly-In Day advocates will be discussing three issues during their meetings on Capitol Hill.

 

Funding the IRS and reforming its budget process has become mission critical. Because of steeply declining funding levels over the past decade, the ability of IRS to fulfil its mission has significantly eroded. A renewed Congressional commitment to funding IRS will ensure taxpayers continue to voluntarily comply with their tax obligations. Funding should be given in ways that make the tax system more efficient, effective, and fair.

Fund IRS and Fix a Broken Budget Process

 

 

 

Congress should establish minimum standards for tax return preparers. Minimum standards will protect taxpayers from unscrupulous actors and ensure that taxpayers can clearly identify which tax professionals have proven a minimum level of competency in preparing tax returns.

Minimum Standards for Paid Tax Preparers

 

 

 

Congress should pass the Taxpayer First Act of 2019, which includes a provision requiring IRS to provide guidance on the use of commercially provided electronic signature applications for taxpayers to sign practitioner powers-of-attorney and disclosure authorization forms. E-signatures have become quite common in today’s commercial world and the available technologies provide enhanced security through two-step authentication processes. IRS supports moving to a “paperless” system and Congress has mandated that all federal government agencies move toward the use of e-signatures. Enrolled agents, and the taxpayers they represent, will greatly benefit from the convenience and security e-signatures will provide.

Electronic Signature Standards Act

 

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