You've scheduled a meeting with your trusted accountant to discuss a difficult transaction, assist with due diligence, structure a business deal, or simply to seek the accountant's sage advice while negotiating the best deal. Will your conversation be privileged, as it likely would be if you were consulting your attorney? The simple answer is "no," not even close, unless a very narrow exception applies. Oregon common law does not recognize a privilege protecting the confidentiality of communications arising from the accountant-client relationship.
Federal law, in contrast, creates an extremely limited privilege for tax advice by accountants and other professionals authorized to practice before the Internal Revenue Service. It's called the Federally Authorized Tax Practice Privilege. A common misconception is that the tax practitioner privilege is as broad as the attorney-client privilege. It is not.
The tax practitioner privilege applies only to "tax advice," as defined by federal law, and may be asserted only in noncriminal tax matters before the Internal Revenue Service or in federal court tax cases by or against the United States. In other words, the tax practitioner privilege does not apply to many, if not most, of the common situations where clients consult their accountants. For example: