Tag Archive for professional tax software

Filing Deadline Extended to March 30 for Some Tax-Exempt Organizations


R-2011-120, Dec. 16, 2011

WASHINGTON — Tax-exempt organizations with January and February filing due dates will have until March 30, 2012, to file their annual returns, the Internal Revenue Service announced today.

The IRS is granting this extension of time to file because the part of the e-file system that processes electronically filed returns of tax-exempt organizations will be off-line during January and February. The agency stressed that the rest of the e-file system will continue to operate normally and urged all individuals and businesses to choose the accuracy, speed and convenience of electronic filing.

In general, the extension applies to tax-exempt organizations whose normal filing deadline is either Jan. 17 or Feb. 15, 2012. Ordinarily, these deadlines would apply to organizations with a fiscal year that ended on Aug. 31 or Sept. 30, 2011, respectively. The extension also applies to organizations that already obtained an initial three-month filing extension and now have an extended filing deadline that falls on Jan. 17 or Feb. 15, 2012. The majority of tax-exempt organizations will be unaffected by this extension because they operate on a calendar-year basis and have a May 15 filing deadline.

The extension applies to affected organizations filing Forms 990990-EZ990-PF, or 1120-POL. Form 990-N filers will not be affected. No form needs to be filed to get the March 30 extension.

In order to avoid receiving a late filing penalty notice, a reasonable cause statement should be attached to the tax return. If organizations receive late-filing penalty notices, they should contact the IRS so that these penalties can be abated. The IRS encouraged these organizations to consider either e-filing early — before the end of December — or waiting until March to file electronically.

Further details are in Notice 2012-4, posted today on IRS.gov.

IRS Commissioner Speaks


Prepared Remarks of Douglas H. Shulman, Commissioner of Internal Revenue, Before the IRS/George Washington University 24th Annual Institute on Current Issues in International Taxation, Washington, DC, Dec. 15, 2011  

Good afternoon and it’s good to be at the IRS/GW Annual Institute on Current Issues in International Taxation which is now one of the preeminent venues to talk about international tax issues. This is a very important dialogue for all of us who want a healthy U.S. tax system.

Today, I would like to talk about a new sensible and strategic approach to international tax issues. It brings into tight focus efficiency, effectiveness, working smarter and a real-time resolution of issues – which I am working to integrate and apply throughout the IRS’ operations – not just for international tax issues. » Read more..

Registered Tax Return Preparer Test Now Open And Must be Passed by 12/31/2013

Professiona tax preparation software, tax preparation software for preparers, w-2 printing, 1099 printing

IRS Return Preparer Office

Scheduling for the Registered Tax Return Preparer test is now available. To schedule an appointment, simply log into your PTIN Account and select “View Next Steps and Outstanding Requirements” from the Main Menu page. From there, select “Schedule a Test or Re-test”. You can schedule and pay for your test online. The test fee is $116.

More information about the test, including study resources and a list of test center locations, is available on the IRS.gov Website. You must take and pass the test by December 31, 2013.

Good luck!

IRS Announces Standards for Continuing Education Providers and Accrediting Organizations

Services for tax preparers e-file

IR-2011-115, Dec. 6, 2011

WASHINGTON—The Internal Revenue Service today announced the standards to become an IRS-approved Continuing Education (CE) Provider and the requirements to become an IRS CE Accrediting organization.  The guidance paves the way for the implementation of new CE requirements for certain tax return preparers starting next year.

Individuals who are required to take the Registered Tax Return Preparer competency test before the end of 2013 must begin completing continuing education courses in 2012. The 15-hour annual requirement consists of 10 hours of federal tax law topics, three hours of tax law updates and two hours of ethics and/or professional conduct. Preparers must obtain the courses from IRS-approved providers.

To be an IRS-approved CE Provider, an organization must be one of the following: 

  • An accredited educational institution,
  • Recognized for continuing education purposes by the licensing body of any state or U.S. territory,
  • Approved by a qualifying organization as a provider of CE on subject matters designed for registered tax return preparers, enrolled agents, and enrolled retirement plan agents (such qualifying organizations will be known as accrediting organizations), or
  • Any other professional organization, society or business recognized by the IRS as a provider of CE on subject matters designed for registered tax return preparers, enrolled agents, and enrolled retirement plan agents.

Any organization that wants to become an accrediting organization can immediately submit the required documentation outlined in section 4 of Revenue Procedure 2012-12 to the address provided in the revenue procedure. Once approved, any accrediting organizations will be publicized by the IRS and must renew their status as accrediting organization with the IRS every three years.

New provider application process

Organizations in all four categories must obtain an IRS CE provider number. Organizations are able to apply through a new on-line process beginning today.  As part of the process, continuing education providers are required to pay an annual fee to the third-party vendor selected by the IRS to administer the CE provider application and renewal processes. The fee covers costs to maintain a public listing of all approved providers and to collect course completion information from providers, identifying to the IRS, by PTIN, those attendees who have completed a program. There is no additional IRS fee.

To apply for a provider number and program number(s), organizations should visit:  www.irs.gov/taxpros/ce and click on the “Apply to become an IRS Approved CE Provider” link.  Assistance for CE Provider questions is available Monday-Fri, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. EST by calling 855-296-3150 (toll-free) or 202-499-5606.

The IRS will maintain full oversight of approving and reviewing providers. Additional information, including Frequently Asked Questions, is available at www.IRS.gov/ptin and www.IRS.gov/taxpros/ce.

New PTIN Application Functionality Available, New Email Address Could Be Used


Preparers who no longer have access to the email addresses associated with their PTIN accounts or who do not remember what email address they used when obtaining a PTIN can now update their email addresses without logging into their accounts.

Simply select “Forgot or Cannot Access Email?” from the Tax Professional PTIN System. Preparers must know their Last Name, Date of Birth, PTIN, Social Security Number, and the answer to their Secret Question in order to use this functionality.

IRS Urges Tax Professionals to Prepare Now for New e-File Rules Using Tax Preparation Software

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IR-2011-100, Oct. 12, 2011

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today advised tax professionals and tax firms that do not have Electronic Filing Identification Numbers (EFINs) to start the process to obtain EFINs now so they can meet new e-file requirements for 2012.

Starting in January 2012, any paid preparer or firm that reasonably anticipates preparing and filing 11 or more Form 1040 series returns, Form 1041 returns, or a combination of Form 1040 series returns and Form 1041 returns generally must use IRS e-file. Their clients who file these forms, however, may independently choose to file by paper.

To become Authorized IRS e-file Providers, preparers must create an e-Services account, submit an EFIN application and pass a suitability check. The approval process can take 45 days or more. For a firm or an individual, only one EFIN is needed.

The 2012 requirement will mark the second and final phase of implementing a law that was intended to boost the electronic filing rate of income tax returns for individuals, trusts and estates. In 2011, the e-file mandate pertained to any paid preparer or firm that anticipated preparing and filing 100 or more returns. The e-file rate by paid preparers increased 12 percent in 2011.

Currently, nearly 80 percent of individual tax returns are filed electronically. The IRS has processed more than 1 billion individual tax returns safely and securely since the nationwide debut of electronic filing in 1990.

Preparers can review the process on IRS.gov at Become an Authorized e-file Provider or find additional guidance at the Frequently Asked Questions section.
If the requirement will cause undue hardship, preparers may seek a one-year waiver by submitting Form 8944, Preparer e-file Hardship Waiver Request. If a client wants to file a paper return, the preparer should include Form 8948, Preparer Explanation for Not Filing Electronically, with the return. A taxpayer choice statement should be obtained and kept with the preparer’s records.

Form 8948 does not have to be submitted with returns that are not currently accepted electronically by the IRS or the IRS has instructed taxpayers not to file them electronically. These returns are exempt from the federal e-file requirement. Other limited exemptions may apply.

IRS Helps Tax ID Theft Victims with New IP PIN

Professional tax preparation software, 1099 printing, w-2 printing

A six-digit Identity Protection Personal Identification Number or IP PIN is being provided to those victims of tax-related identity theft who have had their identities verified by IRS to avoid delays in processing their federal returns.                      

If your client indicates he or she received IRS Letter 4869CS providing them with an IP PIN, please ask your client for the letter and follow the instructions provided when preparing the return. Important: If your client received an IP PIN, please enter it on the tax return to avoid processing delays. 

For electronic returns, the software will indicate where to insert the IP PIN. For paper returns, enter the IP PIN in the six boxes to the right of the spouse’s occupation in the signature section.

Tax professionals may send general inquiries to-IPPIN.Questions@irs.gov

New Law Repeals 3% Contractor Withholding

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New Law Repeals 3% Contractor Withholding


On Nov. 21, 2011, the 3% Withholding Repeal and Job Creation Act of 2011 was signed into law, repealing section 3402(t) of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC). This legislation eliminates the withholding and reporting requirements established under IRC section 3402(t) and the accompanying regulations.

IRC section 3402(t) would have required all Federal and state government entities, and some local government entities, to withhold 3% on certain payments to contractors, beginning on Jan. 1, 2013.  The regulations under section 3402(t) also required the government entity to report the amount of the payment and the amount withheld on Form 1099-MISC.

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IRS to Host Public Meeting Dec. 8 on Real-Time Tax System

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IR-2011-114, Nov. 30, 2011

WASHINGTON –– The Internal Revenue Service will kick off a series of public meetings  Thursday, Dec. 8 to gather feedback on how to implement a series of long-term changes to the tax system described by IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman in an April 2011 speech at the National Press Club.  In that speech, the Commissioner described a vision where the IRS would move away from the traditional “look back” model of compliance, and instead perform substantially more “real time,” or upfront matching of tax returns when they are first filed with the IRS.  The goal of this initiative is to improve the tax filing process by reducing burden for taxpayers and improving overall compliance upfront.

Under the vision of a real-time tax system, the IRS » Read more..

IRS Seeks to Return $153 Million in Undelivered Checks to Taxpayers

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IRS Seeks to Return $153 Million in Undelivered Checks to Taxpayers; Recommends e-file, Direct Deposit to Avoid Future Delivery Problems

Video: Undeliverable Refunds: English | Spanish | ASL
Podcast: Undeliverable Refunds

IR-2011-113, Nov. 30, 2011

WASHINGTON — In an annual reminder to taxpayers, the Internal Revenue Service announced today that it is looking to return $153.3 million in undelivered tax refund checks. In all, 99,123 taxpayers are due refund checks this year that could not be delivered because of mailing address errors.

Undelivered refund checks average $1,547 this year.

Taxpayers who believe their refund check may have been returned to the IRS as undelivered should use the “ Where’s My Refund?” tool on IRS.gov. The tool will provide the status of their refund and, in some cases, instructions on how to resolve delivery problems.

Taxpayers checking on a refund over the phone will receive instructions on how to update their addresses. Taxpayers can access a telephone version of “Where’s My Refund?” by calling 1-800-829-1954. » Read more..