The IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998 granted a “qualified” privilege status to communications between taxpayers and their non-attorney representatives. There is considerable misunderstanding about what this statute really means to clients of Enrolled Agents and CPAs. Little has been published regarding the limited scope and application of this privilege, but it is clear that the law does not make the communications privilege equal to that of attorneys. However, not even attorneys are granted privilege if they prepare tax returns. We must alert you that privileged communications (those that are protected from IRS authority to compel our testimony) are limited to non-criminal tax advice on matters before IRS or non-criminal tax proceedings in federal courts. This means that any discussion we have related to the preparation of your tax returns, as in the past, is not covered by this statute. Anything you tell us during the interview for the preparation of your tax return is confidential, but not protected from the IRS. In addition, we cannot disregard the implications of any information you provide to us in the process of preparing your return. If you feel that the nature of the subject matter to be discussed requires protected communications, please raise that issue so that we can discuss your possible need to consult an attorney for legal advice.