If you need to reach the Internal Revenue Service, your wait on hold will average about a half-hour, the tax agency says, noting that “some telephone service lines may have longer wait times.”
In fact, most calls won’t even be answered.
“Put differently, IRS employees did not answer more than 75 million telephone calls from taxpayers seeking help in complying with their tax obligations,” said taxpayer advocate Erin M. Collins.
This being the land of opportunity, an enterprising Florida company has come up with a solution — for a price.
The company, called EnQ, swamps the IRS’ switchboard with its own calls, then sells desirable, time-saving slots near the head of the hold line to accountants and tax preparers willing to pay up to $1,000 a year.
By subscribing to the line-cutting service, EnQ says, tax professionals trying to reach the IRS can slash their waits on hold by as much as 90%.
The service also is available on a monthly basis to ordinary taxpayers who may be having difficulties resolving a problem with their returns.
Andrew Valiente, the founder and chief executive of EnQ, says he’s just turning the IRS’ customer-service lemons into potentially lucrative lemonade.
“When there’s a problem, there’s an opportunity,” he told me.
Basically, Valiente has come…