Tax ethics and standards

Exercising due diligence

By providing documented due diligence, practitioners can explain why they took the position and show they used reasonable care when determining the position was appropriate.

AICPA’s revised confidentiality rule and Sec. 7216

The recently revised AICPA Code of Professional Conduct includes a new Confidential Client Information Rule under Section 1.700.001, which expands the guidance on maintaining the confidentiality of client information.

AICPA sues IRS to stop return preparer program

An unenrolled preparer program is an “end run” around an adverse court decision, the Institute says. The AICPA filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in July, asking the court to halt the IRS’s recently introduced Annual Filing Season Program. The AICPA’s three-count complaint asks

IRS explains power-of-attorney requirements for corporate taxpayers

On Tuesday, the IRS’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) issued a bulletin clarifying when corporate officers or employees must have a valid power of attorney in order to represent the company before the IRS (OPR Bulletin 2014-12). The bulletin also discusses how the existence of a power of attorney may

CPA practitioners sue to stop PTIN fees

Two CPAs have filed suit in the U.S. district court for the District of Columbia, asking the court to stop the IRS from charging fees for issuing preparer tax identification numbers (PTINs), to obtain refunds of fees paid in the past, and to enjoin the IRS from asking for more

AICPA sues IRS to stop return preparer program

The AICPA filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Tuesday, asking the court to halt the IRS’s recently introduced Annual Filing Season Program. The AICPA’s three-count complaint asks the court to declare the rule implementing the program unlawful and stop its operation. The Annual

IRS reveals details of voluntary preparer certification program

On Thursday, the IRS announced that it will soon introduce a voluntary program for tax return preparers called the Annual Filing Season Program (IR-2014-75). This program will permit return preparers to obtain a record of completion when they voluntarily complete 18 hours of continuing education, including a six-hour refresher course

AICPA reiterates its strong concerns about IRS voluntary certification program

The AICPA on Tuesday sent a 14-page letter to the IRS, expressing its strong concerns that a proposed IRS voluntary certification program for unenrolled tax return preparers “would cause significant legal problems that may ultimately frustrate the IRS’s goals, confuse the public, and lead to litigation.” The IRS is expected

New rules for providing written tax advice are finalized

The IRS issued final regulations under Circular 230, Regulations Governing Practice Before the Internal Revenue Service (31 C.F.R. Part 10), on the rules for practitioners to provide written tax advice and certain other related provisions (T.D. 9668), adopting the proposed regulations (REG-138367-06) issued in September 2012 with some modifications. The

AICPA has “deep concerns” about IRS voluntary certification of return preparers

Following the defeat in federal court of the IRS’s tax return preparer regulation program, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen has commented that the IRS should consider a voluntary certification program for tax return preparers. On Wednesday, the AICPA sent the commissioner a letter, expressing its “deep concerns” about such a program.


Year-end tax planning and what’s new for 2016

Practitioners need to consider several tax planning opportunities to review with their clients before the end of the year. This report offers strategies for individuals and businesses, as well as recent federal tax law changes affecting this year’s tax returns.


News quiz: Retirement planning, tax practice, and fraud risk

Recent reports focused on a survey that gauges the worries about retirement among CPA financial planners’ clients, a suit that affects tax practitioners, and a guide that offers advice on fraud risk. See how much you know with this short quiz.


Bolster your data defenses

As you weather the dog days of summer, it’s a good time to make sure your cybersecurity structure can stand up to the heat of external and internal threats. Here are six steps to help shore up your systems.