I helped my friend to amend taxes. However, Franchise Tax Board is still not satisfied - they expect that on form 565 box 24 we should pay $800 annual fee for her General Partnership. General Partnerships don't have to pay this fee as far as I understand and as instructions on form 565 indicate.

Can I call FTB and represent my friend if my friend and I are on the phone with FTB? And what should I look out for?

Bread for thought:

  1. I am not licensed CPA.
  2. My name does not appear anywhere on her partnership Tax returns.
  3. I am not receiving money for helping her out.
  4. She has not filed anything with Secretary of State; so I am quite sure the status of her business is General Partnership.
  5. She does not speak English that well; and last time she called FTB said that they don't understand what she is talking about.
  • You can certainly assist her and translate for her. I don't know whether you can represent her. I know nothing about the Franchise Tax Board, but the odds of an agency being willing about their own form are vanishingly small.
    – keshlam
    Mar 13, 2016 at 0:45
  • Do you really mean "represent" in the legal sense of making decisions for her, or do you just mean to be on the phone to translate for her, letting her make the decisions? Those probably lead to very different answers.
    – user32479
    Mar 14, 2016 at 20:11
  • @Brick With "represent" I meant here 1) asking for status of her case in FTB files (e.g. my friend sent documents over mail and I don't know if FTB received them); 2) explaining business structure that she had in particular years and 3) inquiring about next things that we should do so that case would be addressed at FTB side.
    – john1234
    Mar 14, 2016 at 23:35

1 Answer 1


In order for you to be able to talk to the FTB on someone's behalf, that someone has to submit form 3520. Note that since you're not a professional, this form must be paper-filed (CRTP, EA, CPA or attorneys can have this filed on-line). Once the form is accepted by the FTB, you can contact the FTB on behalf of your friend. Pay attention: you're going to represent the partnership, not the individual.

  • Just had a 3 party call with FTB. Even though my friend did not authorize me with form 3520, I was still able to speak with FTB representative while my friend was also on the line. Though, FTB representative was a little suspicious and asked questions, like what is my name, how am I related and so on.
    – john1234
    Mar 14, 2016 at 19:34
  • @HalfWay that only worked because it was a 3-party call (and even that didn't have to happen), but with the form 3520 you can do it on your own.
    – littleadv
    Mar 15, 2016 at 2:16

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