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Third Party Non-Attorney Representatives

Question: "Who is allowed to appear or represent a party before the Board?"
Answer: It depends on who is filing the appeal.

The Idaho Supreme Court controls the practice of law in Idaho. The High Court has ruled that representing a third party in a judicial-like proceeding constitutes the practice of law. Proceedings before the Board are judicial-like in nature. Accordingly, the practice of representing a party before the Board is legally restricted. The Board has adopted representation rules intended to embody those expressed by the Idaho Supreme Court.

The following discussion is an attempt to explain and clarify who may appear in a representative capacity. It should be noted the rules apply to who may appear at hearing as a representative and who may sign an appeal or other filing. Allowing a non-qualified individual to act as a representative would amount to the unauthorized practice of law, and would be unlawful.

A natural person may represent him or herself, or may be represented by a licensed Idaho attorney in good standing. Generally, a natural person may not be represented by a relative, a friend, an accountant, or any other non-attorney individual. A power of attorney issued to a non-attorney does not qualify such person or entity to represent a natural person before the Board.

A corporation may be represented by a licensed Idaho attorney in good standing, or may be represented by an officer or director of the corporation. Corporate officer representation is restricted to those at the highest level of management, such as the President, Secretary, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Chief Financial Officer (CFO), or other similar individual. A Vice President or Manager is not allowed to represent a corporation.

An LLC may be represented by a licensed Idaho attorney in good standing, or may be represented by a member of the LLC; or as applicable, by a Manager of a manager-managed LLC. The term manager in this context refers strictly to managers identified in the operating agreement of the LLC. This does not include positions such as property manager or tax manager.

A partnership may be represented by a licensed Idaho attorney in good standing, or by a partner. In the case of a general partnership, any partner may represent the entity. For limited partnerships, the general partner may act as the representative.

A trust may be represented by a licensed Idaho attorney in good standing, or may be represented by the trustee. A beneficiary may not represent a trust.

Governmental agencies may be represented by a licensed Idaho attorney in good standing, or by a public officer or a designated representative. Commonly a county is represented before the Board by the Assessor, Deputy Assessor, Prosecutor or a Deputy Prosecutor. In cases involving the State Tax Commission, a Deputy Attorney General or a Tax Policy Specialist commonly represents the agency.

For help with questions or to get additional information, please contact the Board at 208-334-3354.

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