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Ask Lane Your Own Question
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 12481
Experience:  Law Degree, specialization in Tax Law and Corporate Law, CFP and MBA, Providing Financial & Tax advice since 1986
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I am an Enrolled Agent, currently in Las Vegas. I received

Customer Question

I am an Enrolled Agent, currently in Las Vegas. I received a really discourteous letter from the CA FTB:
Date of California Franchise Tax Board Demand to Furnish Information
The People of the State of California to ***** (my address)
In the matter of (clients name) PLEASE FAX RESPONSE
Ths Demadn requires you to furnish the Franchise Tax Board with informaton specificed below:
1. Current address and phone number for the taxpayer.
2. Copy of hte payment instrument used by the taxpayer to pay for services.
3. Name of all financial institutions used by the taxpayer.
4. Name, address and phone number of all business where the taxpayer has contacts.
Name and phone number of person providing this information:
Please return the informatoin in the enclosed envelope.
Then is has authoried representative and note date, fax no. etc.
To me this is Gestapo like and illegal. In fact, I have not been paid for the service. And all the data I have is on the return i filed. Exeption is his cell number.
Is there any reason, I should respond? Can FTB bohter me in any way? Would it be inadvisable to send them a curt letter back. "I received your demands. I am an American citizen, a licensed enrolled agent, and feels your demands are inappropriate and would violate my client relatinship. We are not in Nazi Germany.The data you seek is on the return I filed. You will note the client made practically no income in 2014.The party did not pay me for his return. I do not have any of the other data you seek exept a cell number, which the client gave me in confidence. If I demanded you give me a cell phone number, would you turn it over? I may write a letter to California newspapers reporting this discourteous, and to the governer, my former LA Assemblyman, and the ACLU."
Is there anything they can do to me? I do file client's taxes with the FTB. It seems outrageous they would demand data from anyone like this, much less and EA with a signed 2848 Power of Attorney
Would I be better off just to ignore the letter, or respond politely.
Dave Horwedel, EA
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Lane replied 2 years ago.
Hi Dave,.Request from a taxing authority for information from a third part is voluntary compliance..The law does not prevent them from asking for information to be provided voluntarily..However, I would not ruffle feathers, escalate, potentially cause some clerk at CA FTB to rtetaliate against your client..If this was not sent certified, or in some fashion that can guarantee to them that you received, not responding might be the best way to accomplish your objectives here..
Expert:  Lane replied 2 years ago.
NOw, if this were the client, a different issue aries for the taxpayer him/her self.RTC § 19133 provides:"If any taxpayer fails or refuses to furnish any information requested in writing by the Franchise Tax Board or fails or refuses to make and file a return required by this part upon notice and demand by the Franchise Tax Board, then, unless the failure is due to reasonable cause and not willful neglect, the Franchise Tax Board may add a penalty of 25 percent of the amount of tax determined pursuant to Section 19087 or of any deficiency tax assessed by the Franchise Tax Board concerning the assessment of which the information or return was required."
Expert:  Lane replied 2 years ago.
So, not reposnding for now IF this wasn't sent return receipt or delivery service THEN contacting the client and making him/her aware of their responsibility might be the happy medium here.
Expert:  Lane replied 2 years ago.
Hi,. ... just checking back in to see how everything is going,.Did my answer help?.Let me know...Lane