Anyone who prepares tax returns and charges a fee will be required to register with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Tax attorneys, certified public accountants, and enrolled agents are exempt because they are already registered with the IRS.
What will be required for a tax preparer to sign a federal tax return:
- Register and obtain a preparer tax identification number (PTIN)
- Required competency tests except for certified public accountants, enrolled agents, and attorneys.
- Continuing education except for certified public accountants, enrolled agents, and attorneys
- Extending the ethical rules in the Treasury Department Circular 230 to apply to tax preparers.
These rules are meant to help tax preparers become more competent in preparing tax returns and reduce the amounts of errors on tax returns. The IRS will start implementing this plan sometime in 2011. Make sure your tax preparer is registered with the IRS.
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