Fiduciary

IRS Definition

A fiduciary is any person in a position of confidence acting on behalf of any other person. A fiduciary assumes the powers, rights, duties, and privileges of the person or entity on whose behalf he or she is acting. Examples of fiduciaries include administrators, conservators, designees, executors, guardians, receivers, trustees of a trust, trustees in bankruptcy, personal representatives, persons in possession of property of a decedent’s estate, or debtors-in-possession of assets in any bankruptcy proceeding by order of the court.

More from H&R Block

An individual or entity that is willing to accept fiduciary responsibility for tax matters must file an IRS Form 56, Notice Concerning Fiduciary Relationship to be able to act as the taxpayer with the IRS. This form is typically filed when an individual becomes incapacitated, decides to delegate his or her tax responsibilities, or the individual dies.

Form 56 differs from a Form 2848, Power of Attorney form which allows a representative to act on behalf of the individual. With Form 2848, the taxpayer is still responsible for filing and paying his or her taxes on time and is ultimately responsible for any actions the representative takes on his or her behalf (such as making the payments on an installment agreement the representative set up on his or her behalf).

Once a fiduciary files a Form 56, the fiduciary takes on the duties and responsibilities of the taxpayer and must file and pay the individual’s taxes and handle any other tax issues that arise while the Form 56 is in place.

Learn how to research your IRS account.

Get help from an expert

Your local H&R Block tax pro can look into your issue and deal with the IRS for you.

Schedule a Free Consultation

Or call 855-536-6504

Related Information

How to Research Your IRS Account

Requesting your tax transcripts is the best way to research your IRS tax account. You can also authorize your tax pro to communicate with the IRS for you.

Power of Attorney: It’s How Your Tax Pro Deals with the IRS For You

Learn the three main benefits of engaging a power of attorney to research your IRS account and resolve your tax problems. Get the facts from the experts at H&R Block.

Want to Know if You’re in Good Standing with the IRS? Here’s How.

For many people, their status with the IRS is a mystery. Learn four ways to request your tax information from the IRS to make sure you're in good standing.

How Long Does It Take to Resolve Tax Problems?

The length of time it will take to resolve your tax problem depends on the type of issue and the complexity. Learn more from the tax experts at H&R Block.

The Top Seven Questions About IRS Transcripts – and How They Can Help You

Learn the value of IRS tax transcripts from the experts at H&R Block. Find out why you may need them, where to get them, and how to decode them.

Four Things You Should Know Before Calling the IRS

Do you need to call the IRS? Get the IRS phone number and learn what you need to know before calling from the tax experts at H&R Block.