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Professional Tax Software News & Advice

IRS Regulation of Licensed Tax Return Preparers Overruled

The IRS does not have the authority to regulate the tax preparation profession and license hundreds of thousands of tax preparers, a federal judge ruled late January 18, 2013. The IRS rules requiring all paid tax return preparers to pass a competency test and meet continuing education requirements are all part of the regulatory structure the court found invalid. All three prongs of the IRS tax preparer regulation regime were affected by the ruling, including the testing, continuing education and RTRP registration requirements. However, the Preparer Tax Identification Number, or PTIN, which is part of the registration requirements, is not affected by the lawsuit. [More]

Registered Tax Return Preparer Competency Test (RTRP)

The IRS requires all paid tax preparers to register with the IRS, to obtain a PTIN, and for those preparers who are not CPAs, attorneys, EAs, supervised preparers or non-1040 preparers to pass a competency exam, and a tax compliance and suitability check. When the preparer has successfully fulfilled these two requirements, he or she will be considered a Registered Tax Return Preparer (RTRP). All preparers who have obtained a Provisional PTIN before April 18, 2012, will have until December 31, 2013 to pass the RTRP competency test. After the April 18, 2012 date passes, paid preparers will not be issued a PTIN until they have passed the competency exam and background check. [More]