Tax return preparers with a valid power of attorney can save their clients time and money by using the IRS Online Payment Agreement (OPA) tool to request a payment plan (installment agreement) on their client’s behalf.
OPA can also be used to apply for an installment agreement for a 2020 Form 1040 balance of up to $50,000 before receiving a bill or notice. The advantages of using OPA include:
- Lower user fees (if applicable) compared to other application methods
- Instant notification of approval
- No need to call or write the IRS
- Expanded hours of system availability, including evenings and weekends
Requests for payment plans submitted through electronic tax software are processed similarly to mailing in a paper Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request.
It can take 30 days or longer for the IRS to respond to payment plan requests submitted by mail or through tax software. Generally, tax preparers will save their clients time and money (subject to lower user fees) by using OPA to apply for the same payment plan instead.