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15 Ways Accountants Can Make More Money Under the New IRS Strategic Operations Plan

Now that the IRS has just released its Strategic Operations Plan which lays out the allocation of the funds, you may want to pay close attention to this plan.


By Eric L. Green, LL.M.

What was your initial reaction when you first heard that the IRS was getting $80 billion dollars as part of the Inflation Reduction Act? Fear for your clients who may be in the crosshairs? Relief that maybe your job as a tax and accounting professional might get marginally easier with added agents available to respond to your calls and responses on behalf of your clients? Or nonchalance, since tax representation isn’t an area that you are particularly interested in as a professional? 

Now that the IRS has just released its Strategic Operations Plan which lays out the allocation of the funds, you may want to pay close attention to this plan. Especially if you are interested in making more money while also helping people who really need your expertise. 

What do I mean? Consider this: 90% of the $80 billion dollar IRS infusion is now allocated to enforcement and improving operations to support these efforts, particularly focusing on taxpayers with annual income of more than $400,000, complex partnerships, and large corporations. In other words, the IRS is now targeting taxpayers and businesses who can afford to pay professionals to protect their assets and livelihoods.

In the world of tax representation, where I spend the majority of my professional life, there has definitely been a lot of speculation that this funding will lead to increased taxpayer scrutiny and tax law enforcement, which of course, is a no-brainer. However, given that tax representation has, until now, remained a relatively specialized segment of the accounting profession the buzz was fairly localized. Not anymore.

The IRS has just presented the tax and accounting community with an easy pathway to leveraging highly profitable tax representation and advisory work. Now the mass media are helping to spread the word to your prospective customers as they publish the details of this new era of the IRS. So how can you take advantage of this business opportunity?

Start by understanding what a tax representation practice could actually entail. It’s more than just audits and installment agreements. There are many service options to choose from as noted in this list below. The real decision to be made is what do you want to do, day in and day out?  It does not make sense in the long run to provide services you do not like providing.

There are at least 15 lucrative tax representation services you can choose to provide including:

  1. Bookkeeping – This is the backbone of your clients’ finances. Without clean books, there is no way to have a clear financial picture. 
  2. Forensic accounting – If you like piecing puzzles together in your current role, then you may find your niche in doing so for legal cases involving tax representation.
  3. Tax Return Preparation – From back taxes to penalties for late and non-filers if tax prep is your ideal engagement you can definitely make money in tax representation.
  4. Offers-in-Compromise – In our Tax Representation Network training, I teach offers-in-compromise (OIC) as a cash cornerstone for a million-dollar tax rep practice. They are not difficult to learn how to do effectively. 
  5. Installment Agreements – Same story as OICs, learn the process and you can attract as many clients as you want.
  6. Uncollectible Status – You can help your clients facing IRS penalties get relief by obtaining uncollectible status with the IRS.
  7. Transcript analysis – Once you know what you are looking for, it is very easy to make money doing tax transcript analysis. 
  8. Tax Liens and Levies – More step-by-step processes you can learn include how to relate to getting liens and levies reduced or eliminated for your clients.
  1. Penalty abatement – One of the most rewarding areas of tax representation is providing relief to clients facing significant tax penalties.
  2. Challenging assessed taxes – If you like to do research and prove it out based on facts, you will enjoy this piece of tax representation. 
  3. IRS Exams – Be your clients’ hero in dealing with the IRS on their behalf using tax representation skills.
  4. Appeals – You can also represent clients during appeals which can also be highly lucrative. 
  5. Resolving Payroll Tax and Reasonable Compensation Issues – These are so common, especially among S-corp businesses but they can be a terrible headache. One that you can help to relieve.
  6. Sales Tax – Another area that millions of businesses owner face issues with 
  7. Criminal Tax Investigations and Prosecutions – If you love a good mystery solved and cases closed, this type of tax rep may be for you. 

Maybe you are still skeptical about how you can leverage these tax representation needs into a practice you actually enjoy. The truth is, if I can build a $5 million dollar practice doing this, I have no doubt you can, too. If one or two of the services noted above sings to you, then I am confident you will be successful building a practice with the right training because this type of work truly is process-driven. 

The IRS has put the public, and by the same token, our profession on notice: The vast majority of their renewed funding will be used to ensure as many taxpayers as possible pay their fair share. For those who are unable to, you can help them take care of the situation in the right way, relieving their stress and giving them freedom to move on with their lives. That, in my opinion,  is the true reward of tax representation work.

Eric L. Greene, LL.M. is the founder of the Tax Rep Network, and a partner at Green & Sklarz, LLC.