General FAQs

What are some of the features of the course?


Our courses are online. Once you purchase the course you have immediate access to it. You can go in and out of the course at your convenience for up to six months (one year for Notary and Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course). The reading material is built within the course and is presented in an online E-Book format making the reading material portable if you prefer to work offline. Our tax and notary course features automatic grading, a detailed review of your missed quiz questions, and full instructor support. You will have unlimited number of tries to pass the quizzes and the final exams*. Discussion forums are available within the course. Once you complete the course with a 70% or better, you have access to print your own certificate of completion (*Note: The 6 hour AFTR course is limited to 6 attempts).




Can I print the reading material?


The reading material is built within the course in an E-Book format with chapters and can be printed.




How long has your company been in business?


We have been in business since 1995. We have been online since 2001 and are one of the first e-tailers.




If I need additional support after I register for a course, what should I do?


You may email us at info@platinumprostudies.com or call us at 877 315 1772, Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm, PT. We also offer Live Chat. We will try to return your email or phone call by the end of the business day.




What are your business hours?


Our business hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm, PT.




What is your refund policy?


If you are not completely satisfied with our course, we will offer you a full refund within thirty days of purchasing. No refunds are given for group orders or to students who have submitted more than quiz or any final exams.




How long will I have access to the course for?


You will have access to the course for six months from the date of purchase with the exception of the Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course and our Notary Courses which you will have access to for one year from the date of purchase.




Can I work at my own pace?


Yes, you will work at your own pace and will have access to the course for up to six months from the date of purchase (one year for Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course and Notary Course).





Tax Preparer FAQs

What are some of the features of the course?


Our courses are online. Once you purchase the course you have immediate access to it. You can go in and out of the course at your convenience for up to six months (one year for Notary and Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course). The reading material is built within the course and is presented in an online E-Book format making the reading material portable if you prefer to work offline. Our tax and notary course features automatic grading, a detailed review of your missed quiz questions, and full instructor support. You will have unlimited number of tries to pass the quizzes and the final exams. Discussion forums are available within the course. Once you complete the course with a 70% or better, you have access to print your own certificate of completion.




I am already an existing tax return preparer, what do I need to do to participate in the Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP)?


All tax preparers who are preparing tax returns for compensation must obtain a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). The PTIN can be obtained here. In addition, you must either take the 15 Hour IRS AFSP Continuing Education Course or the 18 Hour IRS AFSP Continuing Education Course w/AFTR. The 15 hour course is for those who have: Completed one of more of the following national or state tests:

  • 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
Those who did not complete the above must complete 18 hours of education in order to participate in the Annual Filing Season Program. Note that those who are in California, Oregon, Maryland, and New York will need to fulfill the state requirements as well.




I am currently registered as a Tax Preparer with CTEC, what is the deadline for completing the 20 Hour Continuing Education Course?


The deadline for completing the annual 20 hours of continuing education, is October 31st. After October 31st, you can still register until January 15th, but you will need to pay an additional late fee.




How much does the CTEC Qualifying tax course cost?


The CTEC 60 Hour Qualifying Tax Course is competitively priced at $129.00




How much does the CTEC Continuing tax course cost?


The CTEC 20 Hour Continuing Education Tax Preparer Course start at $36.00.




Does the 20 hour include the 2 hours of Ethics?


Yes, it also includes three hours of federal tax updates, ten hours of federal tax law, and five hours of California state tax law.




Where do I purchase my California Tax Preparer's Bond?


Platinum Professional Services offers Tax Preparer Bonds through an affiliate.




I have completed the 20 Hour Continuing Education Course; can I register with CTEC online?


Yes, since Platinum Professional Studies reports the completion of the Course to CTEC electronically, you can register online without having to mail anything. Go to: http://www.ctec.org to complete the registration process. You will not need your course information, as it has already been reported. You will need your bond information. Note: We will report all completions to CTEC within three business days.




I have tried registering with CTEC and my course hours have not been reported, why?


Have you received your certificate of completion? If you have not received your certificate of completion from within your course, it will not be marked as complete and Platinum Professional Services will not be notified of your completion. Have you waited three business days, prior to trying? Allow this time so that the system can be updated. Check that the last six digits of your SSN is in your account. If they are not, you will need to add them and then give us a call at 877 315 1772. If none of the above applies, and you still can not register, contact Platinum Professional Services at customersupport@platinumprostudies.com.




I am interested in preparing tax returns in Oregon, do I need to take a course?


Yes, the State of Oregon requires that individuals that prepare tax returns for compensation obtain a Tax Preparer License. The Tax Preparer License enables a person to lawfully prepare personal income tax returns in the State of Oregon. A tax preparer must work under the supervision of a Licensed Tax Consultant, a Certified Public Accountant, a Public Accountant, or an Attorney who prepares tax returns for their clients. The state of Oregon requires all paid Tax Preparers to complete an Oregon 80 Hour Basic Tax Course and pass an exam (administered by Oregon Board of Tax Practicitioners)




In Oregon, once I pass the exam am I required to take any continuing education?


Licensees are required to complete a minimum of 30 hours continuing education as a prerequisite to renewing their license each year.




I am registering as a California Tax Preparer with CTEC for the first time, what do I do once I complete and pass the course?


Once you pass the course, the next step is to obtain a PTIN. You will need to obtain a PTIN (Personal Tax Identification Number) with the IRS at irs.gov/PTIN. You will also need to obtain a Tax Preparers bond. Platinum Professional Services offer Tax Preparer Bonds through an affiliate. After you receive your bond Since Platinum Professional Services reports the completion of the course to CTEC electronically, you can register online without having to mail anything. Go to: http://www.ctec.org to complete the registration process. You will not need your course information, as it has already been reported. However, you will need your bond information. Note: We will report all completions to CTEC within three business days. If your completion is not showing on CTEC.org check that the last six digits of your SSN is in your account. If they are not, you will need to add them and then give us a call at 877 315 1772.




What are the benefits of participating in the AFSP program?


By participating in the IRS Annual Filing Season Program you will be included in the IRS’s public directory of tax return preparers. Additionally, as a program participant, you have limited representation rights, you can represent your clients whose returns you have prepared and signed before examination, customer service representatives, and the Taxpayer Advocate Service in the year you participate in the program.




How do I become an IRS Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion Holder?


In order to participate in the IRS Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP) you must complete 18 or 15 IRS credit hours of continuing education. The 15 hour IRS continuing education tax course includes 10 hours of federal tax law topics, 2 hours of ethics, and 3 hours of updates and is available from January 1st - December 31st. The 18 hour IRS continuing education tax course includes 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 18 hour IRS tax course is available each year from June 1st - December 31st. The program is directed to preparers who are not Attorneys, CPAs or Enrolled Agents. In order to determine whether to take a 15 hour or an 18 hour IRS tax course the guidelines are listed below. 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.

  • Passed the Registered Tax Return Preparer (RTRP) test before 1/18/2013
  • Oregon/California/Maryland and other state based return preparer testing programs
  • Accredited Tax preparer test offered by the Accreditation Council for Accountancy or Taxation
  • Passed Part 1 of the Special Enrollment Exam (aka: SEE and EA Exam) during the 2 year eligibility window
  • Successful Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program reviewers and instructors
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, they 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. Platinum Professional Services offers both the IRS AFSP 18 Hour including the AFTR tax course and the IRS AFSP CE 15 Hour tax course. Once you complete the IRS Continuing Professional Education tax course you will receive a Certificate of Completion from Platinum. Platinum will then report your completion to the IRS electronically. When 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 record of completion 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. Platinum Professional Services is approved by the Internal Revenue Service (approval #JK8E2) to offer both the IRS AFSP CE 18 Hour Tax Course including AFTR as well as IRS AFSP CE 15 Hour Tax Course. Platinum also offers an IRS AFSP Tax Return Preparer Prep Course including AFTR.





Enrolled Agent FAQs

What are some of the features of the course?


Our courses are online. Once you purchase the course you have immediate access to it. You can go in and out of the course at your convenience for up to six months (one year for Notary and Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course). The reading material is built within the course and is presented in an online E-Book format making the reading material portable if you prefer to work offline. Our tax and notary course features automatic grading, a detailed review of your missed quiz questions, and full instructor support. You will have unlimited number of tries to pass the quizzes and the final exams*. Discussion forums are available within the course. Once you complete the course with a 70% or better, you have access to print your own certificate of completion (*Note: The 6 hour AFTR course is limited to 6 attempts).




Can I print the reading material?


The reading material is built within the course in an E-Book format with chapters and can be printed.




How long has your company been in business?


We have been in business since 1995. We have been online since 2001 and are one of the first e-tailers.




If I need additional support after I register for a course, what should I do?


You may email us at info@platinumprostudies.com or call us at 877 315 1772, Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm, PT. We also offer Live Chat. We will try to return your email or phone call by the end of the business day.




What are your business hours?


Our business hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm, PT.




What is your refund policy?


If you are not completely satisfied with our course, we will offer you a full refund within thirty days of purchasing. No refunds are given for group orders or to students who have submitted more than quiz or any final exams.




How long will I have access to the course for?


You will have access to the course for six months from the date of purchase with the exception of the Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course and our Notary Courses which you will have access to for one year from the date of purchase.




Can I work at my own pace?


Yes, you will work at your own pace and will have access to the course for up to six months from the date of purchase (one year for Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course and Notary Course).





Notary FAQs

What is a Notary Public?


A Notary Public is a public servant appointed by state government to witness the signing of important documents and administer oaths.




Why are documents notarized?


Documents are notarized to deter fraud and to ensure they are properly executed. An impartial witness (the Notary) identifies signers to screen out impostors and to make sure they have entered into agreements knowingly and willingly.




What are the requirements to become a California Notary Public?


Every person appointed as a Notary Public shall:

  • Be 18 years of age or older (there is no maximum age set by statute) and
  • Be a legal California resident
  • Complete a the mandatory 6 hour course of study approved by the Secretary of State
  • Satisfactorily complete and pass a written examination prescribed by the Secretary of State
  • Clear a background check (information on fingerprinting below)




How do I become a California Notary Public?


Platinum Professional Services offers the California Secretary of State approved Notary Public Course that is 100% online and meets the mandatory, six hour education requirement mandated by the California Secretary of State. This course is approved by the California Secretary of State and fulfills the State six hour education requirement for new and renewing Notary Publics. Click here to learn more about our Notary course.




What happens after I take the course?


After you take the mandatory 6 hour course, you must satisfactorily complete and pass a written examination prescribed by the Secretary of State. CPS administers the testing. Click here for current testing information and schedules.




What do I take to the Exam?


To take the exam you will need:

  • A current photo identification (e.g. California Driver's License or Identification Card issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles or U.S. Passport);
  • A complete and current Notary Public Application;
  • A 2" x 2" color passport photo of yourself;
  • The Proof of Completion certificate of your six-hour approved education course;
  • The registration confirmation letter; and
  • The $40.00 exam and application processing fee (or $20.00 exam fee for applicants who previously took the exam and failed). Payment must be by check or money order made payable to the Secretary of State (cash is not accepted at the exam site).




How many questions are on the test?


There are 45 multiple choice questions and you have 60 minutes to complete the test. You must get 70% or better to pass.




When will I receive my results?


Result Notification: Results from your Notary Public Examination will be emailed (if you provided an email address on the upper right corner of your application) or mailed via USPS approximately 15 business days following the examination. Result information will not be discussed over the phone.

If you listed an email address on your application, a message containing your user name and password will be sent to you from CPScontact@cpshr.us. Receipt of this message indicates we have processed your application.

This message is automatically generated and may not clear any “spam” filters. In this case, the message is likely to be in your “junk” mailbox. Exam results will be ready approximately 15 business days after the exam date.

To view your results notification online, select the “My Account” link located in the toolbar on the right side. Once logged in, select “View Notifications” to see a copy of your exam results letter. Exam results are available approximately 15 business days after the exam date.




What do I do after I pass the Notary test?


Fingerprints are submitted after you pass the state examination. Details are mailed with your testing results. You will need to submit fingerprints via live scan to the Department of Justice and FBI for your thorough background check. Click here for live scan fingerprint locations throughout California. Once you have done this you will wait for your commission paperwork to arrive (8 to 12 weeks from exam date). For renewing notaries, the commission paperwork for the new commission will be mailed out no sooner than 1 month prior to commission expiration.




Do I need any Notary supplies?


Yes, you will need to order your official Notary Public stamp and journal. You can not notarize any documents until you obtain your Notary Public seal and journal. Order your Notary Public Stamp and Journal




Do I need a bond?


Yes, you must obtain a Notary Public Bond. The bond is for the required four year term and $15,000. You must obtain your bond before you are sworn in as a Notary Public at your County Clerk Recorders office. Do not delay, you have only 30 days from the date of the Secretary of State's mailing to obtain your bond and be sworn in as a Notary. Notary Public Bond




How do I keep my commission?


To renew your commission, you will need to take a 3 hour mandatory course every four years. The 3 hour course has all the same knowledge points as the 6 hour course. Therefore, Platinum Professional Services only offers the 6 hour course. You then will be required to take the exam, and submit live scan fingerprints. Learn more about our California Notary Class





CPA FAQs

What are some of the features of the course?


Our courses are online. Once you purchase the course you have immediate access to it. You can go in and out of the course at your convenience for up to six months (one year for Notary and Enrolled Agent Exam Review Course). The reading material is built within the course and is presented in an online E-Book format making the reading material portable if you prefer to work offline. Our tax and notary course features automatic grading, a detailed review of your missed quiz questions, and full instructor support. You will have unlimited number of tries to pass the quizzes and the final exams. Discussion forums are available within the course. Once you complete the course with a 70% or better, you have access to print your own certificate of completion.




I am already an existing tax return preparer, what do I need to do to participate in the Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP)?


All tax preparers who are preparing tax returns for compensation must obtain a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). The PTIN can be obtained here. In addition, you must either take the 15 Hour IRS AFSP Continuing Education Course or the 18 Hour IRS AFSP Continuing Education Course w/AFTR. The 15 hour course is for those who have: Completed one of more of the following national or state tests:

  • 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
Those who did not complete the above must complete 18 hours of education in order to participate in the Annual Filing Season Program. Note that those who are in California, Oregon, Maryland, and New York will need to fulfill the state requirements as well.




I am currently registered as a Tax Preparer with CTEC, what is the deadline for completing the 20 Hour Continuing Education Course?


The deadline for completing the annual 20 hours of continuing education, is October 31st. After October 31st, you can still register until January 15th, but you will need to pay an additional late fee.




How much does the CTEC Qualifying tax course cost?


The CTEC 60 Hour Qualifying Tax Course is competitively priced at $129.00




How much does the CTEC Continuing tax course cost?


The CTEC 20 Hour Continuing Education Tax Preparer Course start at $36.00.




Does the 20 hour include the 2 hours of Ethics?


Yes, it also includes three hours of federal tax updates, ten hours of federal tax law, and five hours of California state tax law.




Where do I purchase my California Tax Preparer's Bond?


Platinum Professional Services offers Tax Preparer Bonds through an affiliate.




I have completed the 20 Hour Continuing Education Course; can I register with CTEC online?


Yes, since Platinum Professional Studies reports the completion of the Course to CTEC electronically, you can register online without having to mail anything. Go to: http://www.ctec.org to complete the registration process. You will not need your course information, as it has already been reported. You will need your bond information. Note: We will report all completions to CTEC within three business days.




I have tried registering with CTEC and my course hours have not been reported, why?


Have you received your certificate of completion? If you have not received your certificate of completion from within your course, it will not be marked as complete and Platinum Professional Services will not be notified of your completion. Have you waited three business days, prior to trying? Allow this time so that the system can be updated. Check that the last six digits of your SSN is in your account. If they are not, you will need to add them and then give us a call at 877 315 1772. If none of the above applies, and you still can not register, contact Platinum Professional Services at customersupport@platinumprostudies.com.




I am interested in preparing tax returns in Oregon, do I need to take a course?


Yes, the State of Oregon requires that individuals that prepare tax returns for compensation obtain a Tax Preparer License. The Tax Preparer License enables a person to lawfully prepare personal income tax returns in the State of Oregon. A tax preparer must work under the supervision of a Licensed Tax Consultant, a Certified Public Accountant, a Public Accountant, or an Attorney who prepares tax returns for their clients. The state of Oregon requires all paid Tax Preparers to complete an Oregon 80 Hour Basic Tax Course and pass an exam (administered by Oregon Board of Tax Practicitioners)




In Oregon, once I pass the exam am I required to take any continuing education?


Licensees are required to complete a minimum of 30 hours continuing education as a prerequisite to renewing their license each year.




I am registering as a California Tax Preparer with CTEC for the first time, what do I do once I complete and pass the course?


Once you pass the course, the next step is to obtain a PTIN. You will need to obtain a PTIN (Personal Tax Identification Number) with the IRS at irs.gov/PTIN. You will also need to obtain a Tax Preparers bond. Platinum Professional Services offer Tax Preparer Bonds through an affiliate. After you receive your bond Since Platinum Professional Services reports the completion of the course to CTEC electronically, you can register online without having to mail anything. Go to: http://www.ctec.org to complete the registration process. You will not need your course information, as it has already been reported. However, you will need your bond information. Note: We will report all completions to CTEC within three business days. If your completion is not showing on CTEC.org check that the last six digits of your SSN is in your account. If they are not, you will need to add them and then give us a call at 877 315 1772.




What are the benefits of participating in the AFSP program?


By participating in the IRS Annual Filing Season Program you will be included in the IRS’s public directory of tax return preparers. Additionally, as a program participant, you have limited representation rights, you can represent your clients whose returns you have prepared and signed before examination, customer service representatives, and the Taxpayer Advocate Service in the year you participate in the program.




How do I become an IRS Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion Holder?


In order to participate in the IRS Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP) you must complete 18 or 15 IRS credit hours of continuing education. The 15 hour IRS continuing education tax course includes 10 hours of federal tax law topics, 2 hours of ethics, and 3 hours of updates and is available from January 1st - December 31st. The 18 hour IRS continuing education tax course includes 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 18 hour IRS tax course is available each year from June 1st - December 31st. The program is directed to preparers who are not Attorneys, CPAs or Enrolled Agents. In order to determine whether to take a 15 hour or an 18 hour IRS tax course the guidelines are listed below. 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.

  • Passed the Registered Tax Return Preparer (RTRP) test before 1/18/2013
  • Oregon/California/Maryland and other state based return preparer testing programs
  • Accredited Tax preparer test offered by the Accreditation Council for Accountancy or Taxation
  • Passed Part 1 of the Special Enrollment Exam (aka: SEE and EA Exam) during the 2 year eligibility window
  • Successful Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program reviewers and instructors
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, they 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. Platinum Professional Services offers both the IRS AFSP 18 Hour including the AFTR tax course and the IRS AFSP CE 15 Hour tax course. Once you complete the IRS Continuing Professional Education tax course you will receive a Certificate of Completion from Platinum. Platinum will then report your completion to the IRS electronically. When 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 record of completion 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. Platinum Professional Services is approved by the Internal Revenue Service (approval #JK8E2) to offer both the IRS AFSP CE 18 Hour Tax Course including AFTR as well as IRS AFSP CE 15 Hour Tax Course. Platinum also offers an IRS AFSP Tax Return Preparer Prep Course including AFTR.