In order to obtain the IRS Annual Filing Season Program Qualification you will need to successfully complete our 6 hour Annual Federal Tax Refresher course if you have already completed 12 hours of continuing education for the 2017 year.
IRS General Tax Preparer Requirements
The IRS requires all paid tax preparers to sign up with the IRS, pay a registration fee and obtain a preparer tax identification number (PTIN). All tax preparers will need to renew an existing PTIN annually. Enrolled Agents have separate requirements, Click Here to learn more. Please note, residents of California, Oregon, New York and Maryland have separate state requirements. Click the link to learn more about each state's specific requirement.
What are the benefits to becoming an IRS Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion Holder?
Tax preparers who complete the Annual Filing Season Program will be issued a record of completion from the IRS and be listed in their public database detailing the tax preparer’s credentials. The IRS has also launched a public education campaign to encourage taxpayers to select credentialed tax preparers. Beginning January 1st, 2016, there was changes to the representation rights of return preparers. AFSP participants will have limited representation rights and will be able to represent clients before revenue agents and similar IRS employees.
IRS Annual Filing Season Program Continuing Education Requirements
In order to participate in the IRS Annual Filing Season Program one must complete 18 credit hours of continuing education. The Annual Filing Season Program record of completion is available each year from June 1 - December 31st and each year thereafter. The 18 credit hours would need to include 6 hours of an Annual Federal Tax Refresher (AFTR) course with a knowledge based comprehension test, 10 hours of Federal tax law topics and 2 hours of Ethics. The program is directed to preparers who are not attorneys, CPAs or enrolled agents. Tax return preparers who have successfully completed one of the following national or state tests would be exempt from taking the Annual Federal Tax Refresher course with a comprehension test:
- Registered Tax Return Preparers
- Oregon/California/Maryland and other state based return preparer testing programs
- Accredited Tax preparer test offered by the Accreditation Council for Accountancy/Taxation
- Part 1 of the Special Enrollment Exam during the 2 year eligibility window
- Successful Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program reviewers an instructor
If a credentialed tax professional (CPA, attorney, enrolled agent, enrolled retirement plan agent, enrolled actuary) or the exempt group listed above wants to be a part of the Annual Filing Season Program, he/she must have 15 hours of continuing education from an IRS approved provider. The 15 credit hours will need to include 3 hours of Federal tax updates, 10 Hours of Federal tax law topics and 2 hours of Ethics. No CE credit will be given to Enrolled Agents for completing an AFTR course. The 18 credit hours must include 6 hours of an Annual Federal Tax Refresher (AFTR) course with a knowledge based comprehension test, 10 hours of Federal tax law topics and 2 hours of Ethics. The program is directed to preparers who are not attorneys, CPAs or enrolled agents.
Once you complete the IRS Annual Filing Season Program continuing education tax course, you will receive a Certificate of Completion. Platinum will then report your completion to the IRS electronically. Once the tax preparer has met all three requirements for the AFSP (renewed their PTIN, taken appropriate amount of continuing education, completed and passed the AFTR course/test if required), a record of completion will be available in the PTIN holder's online IRS account for printing. Any "unenrolled" preparer not already bound by Circular 230 will need to sign an agreement to follow sub-part b of Circular 230 before being able to print the certificate from the Internal Revenue Service. There will be no cost to the preparer for the AFSP record of completion. The IRS will then list AFSP tax preparers in their public database including the tax preparer's credentials.
About the IRS Annual Federal Tax Refresher Course
The IRS Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP) CE Tax Course includes six hours of the Annual Federal Tax Refresher (AFTR) course with comprehensive test (IRS course #JK8E2-A-00093-17-S), per the IRS's guidelines. The reading material is built within the course with an option to print it out if you prefer to work offline. The 6 hour course contains a total of 100 quiz questions and a 100 question, timed test (3 hours maximum limit). Please note: this tax course is good for six months but in order to particpate in the Annual Filing Season Program you must complete this course by December 31st deadline regardless of the expiration of the course.
Remember, Platinum Professional Services offers automatic grading, feedback on your missed questions, reading material conveniently located within each tax course and unlimited tries to pass the quizzes and final exam(s). We even offer full instructor support. Our tax courses are available to you for six months (180 days) upon purchase and will expire after the six month term. Please note: Enrolled Agent review courses and Notary courses expire after one year. Learn 24/7, online and at your own pace. Best of all, your Certificate of Completion is emailed to you immediately following the successful completion of the tax course. Platinum will then report your completion electronically to IRS.
With Platinum Professional Services there is no confusion, only a direct path to success. Feel free to discover the most proficient way to deepen your education and be efficient, all while saving you time and money. Here at Platinum Professional Services, we make it easy for you without any added obstacles. Everyone wants to simplify their life and finally, we have the way.
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2018 IRS AFSP 6 Hour - Annual Federal Tax Refresher Course