Ethics: When Can Circular 230 Practitioners Charge Contingency Fees?

5 (3 votes)

Ethics: When Can Circular 230 Practitioners Charge Contingency Fees?
Earn two CE Ethics with Bill Nemeth, EA. April 30, 2019 from 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm ET

Live Online IRS Program Number: X9QQU-E-00567-19-O
Self-Study IRS Program Number: X9QQU-E-00567-19-S

Member: $80 Non-Member: $100

This session will begin with an overview of Circular 230 as it relates to contingency fees.  Circular 230 was last revised in June 2014 and so it is extremely out-of-date (Mentions RTRP Program and all the associated regulations that have been over-ruled in the Federal Courts).  The Ridgely vs. Lew Court Case decision is reviewed allowing Circular 230 practitioners to file an amended return on contingency. A summary of situations is presented where contingency fees can and cannot be charged.

The second half of this program is a discussion of real-world ethics examples.

Learning Objectives

  • Define contingency fees.
  • Describe what “unconscionable” contingency fees are.
  • Identify when you can charge contingency fees
  • Review Ridgely vs. Lew contingency fee decision that changed Circular 230.
  • Review common real-world ethics situations.

Bill Nemeth, EA

Bill Nemeth, EA, has over 30 years of experience as a tax professional – He and his wife Merry Brodie operated their tax franchise operation with 24 offices and 12,000 returns per year. They sold this business in 2012 and embarked upon a new endeavor, Tax Audit Guardians, assisting troubled taxpayers. Bill is currently GAEA President & GAEA Education Chair.  He is active at the National Level as an elected member of the NAEA Affiliate Council.   He holds bachelors (Kettering Institute) and masters degrees (MIT) in Mechanical Engineering and an MBA in Marketing (Wayne State University).  He is an NTPI Fellow and has taught at NTPI. He has appeared on TaxTalkToday numerous times and has numerous articles published in the EA Journal. He is the former Chair of the Tax Education Committee and is a current member of the Tax Education Committee and the NAEA Education Foundation Board.  He prepares and presents live programs and webinar programs on timely federal tax topics. He is a member of the IRS SouthEast Stakeholder Liaison Group and is active in the IRS IMRS (Issue Management Resolution System) calls.  In his spare time, he and his wife Merry are amateur beekeepers.


  • Be sure to take both parts of the system test, specifically the Sound and Video tests. Go to: http://eventcenter.commpartners.com/se/Meetings/BrowserTest_New.aspx?account.id=CommPart
  • Your browser must support HTML-5. To detect your browser version, go to https://whichbrowser.net/
  • We recommend the following computer operating systems and browsers:
    • Internet Explorer 12 or greater
    • iOS 10 or greater
    • Safari 10 or greater
    • Edge 14 or greater
    • Firefox 52 or greater
    • Chrome 60 or greater
    • Mac OS X 10.9 or later
    • Windows 7 or later
  • We DO NOT RECOMMEND using Internet Explorer 11 when using Windows 7 since that browser does not support HTML 5. We suggest Firefox or Chrome. 
  • If on WiFi use a hard-wired Ethernet connection. 
  • For optimal viewing, please join on a laptop or desktop computer.
  • Communications from NAEA

    Upon registration, you will receive the following four (or possibly five, if you did not attend the live webinar) e-mails from NAEA's e-learning partner, Commpartners, sent with a subject line: NAEA webinar: <insert course title>

    • Registration confirmation
    • Instructions on how to access the webinar, handouts, quiz and evaluation.
    • Live webinar reminder
    • When webinar recording is ready
    • User did not attend the live webinar

    A list of frequently asked questions is available here.