FAQs: Enrolled Retirement Plan Agent Continuing Education Requirements
1. What are the recordkeeping requirements for RTRPs, EAs, and ERPAs? (posted 1/3/12)
Preparers must retain the following records for four years:
- The name of the CE Provider organization;
- The location of the program;
- The title of the program, approval number received for the program, and copy of the program content;
- Written outlines, course syllabi, textbook, and/or electronic materials provided or required for the program;
- The date(s) attended;
- The credit hours claimed;
- The name(s) of the instructor(s), discussion leader(s), or speaker(s), if appropriate; and
- The certificate of completion and/or signed statement of the hours of attendance obtained from the continuing education provider.
2. Which courses qualify as ERPA CPE credits?
To qualify for continuing education credits, a course must:
- Be a qualifying program that is designed to enhance knowledge in retirement plan matters consistent with the Internal Revenue Code, such as:
1. formal programs
2. correspondence or individual study programs
3. serving as an instructor, discussion leader or speaker
4. credit for published articles, books, etc.
- Be sponsored by an approved ERPA CPE sponsor. ERPAs must have 16 hours of continuing education credits, including two hours of ethics or professional conduct each year of an enrollment cycle.
3. Where can I earn CPE credits?
In general, Circular 230 requires an ERPA to complete a prescribed number of continuing professional education (CPE) credits, including ethics training, during each enrollment cycle (consult Circular 230 for more details regarding CPE requirements). In order to meet this requirement, ERPAs must complete their CPE credits with a sponsor who has been approved by the IRS as having a program specific to retirement plan matters.