The three companies are CBE Group, Waterloo, Iowa; Coast Professional, Albion, N.Y., and Conserve, Fairport, N.Y.
Communications with taxpayers from the IRS will include a copy of Publication 4518, What You Can Expect When the IRS Assigns Your Account to a Private Collection Agency (.pdf). After the IRS notification, the agency will send a letter to taxpayers and representatives informing them of the assignment of the account. Both letters will contain information to help taxpayers identify the amounts owed and that future agency calls are legitimate.
Private collectors must identify themselves as working on behalf of the IRS and follow the provisions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. They are not authorized to take enforcements actions such as a filing of a Federal Tax Lienor issuing a levy.
While the firms can discuss payment options and set up agreements, payments must be made to the IRS.