e-News for Tax Professionals Subscribe to e-News for Tax Professionals for weekly information for tax professionals. News: Taxpayer First Act On July 1, 2019, The Taxpayer First Act of 2019 was signed into law, which aims to broadly redesign the Internal Revenue Service. Generally, the legislation aims to expand and strengthen taxpayer rights and to reform the IRS into a more taxpayer friendly agency. Publication 2043, IRS Refund Information Guidelines for the Tax Professional Community The 2019 Publication 2043 contains the latest refund information you can share with your clients along with other information you may find useful. Protect Client Data, Learn Signs of Data Theft Take basic security steps to protect client data and protect your business. You or your firm may be a victim and not even know it. Earn Continuing Education Credit for Data Security Courses Tax professionals are becoming the number one target of identity thieves. Enrolled agents and Annual Filing Season Program participants can now earn CE credit for programs covering data security and identity theft topics. Identity Theft Information for Tax Professionals Cybercriminals target tax professionals to steal sensitive client data that allows them to file fraudulent tax returns using your clients’ identities. Think it can’t happen to you? It can – and it does. Learn what steps you must take to protect your clients and your business. Data Theft Information for Tax Professionals The IRS has established reporting procedures for tax professionals who experience a theft or loss of client data. Remember, if the IRS is notified quickly, it can take steps that may help protect your clients from tax-related identity theft. Get Ready IRS needs your help to get the word out on key information that taxpayers need to know for the upcoming filing season. The “Get Ready” outreach campaign focuses on helping taxpayers understand important tax law changes that may affect the processing of their tax returns and the timing of refunds for some filers. Affected taxpayers can take actions that will help them file their tax returns timely and accurately. Get Replacement Social Security Benefits Statements Form SSA-1099 Online Help your clients who receive Social Security benefits get their annual benefits statements online through my Social Security. Let your clients know they can get free, instant replacement forms. Protect Your Clients; Protect Yourself The “Protect Your Clients; Protect Yourself” campaign identifies common sense steps tax professionals can take to guard against identity theft. IRS Advisory Council issues 2020 Annual Report The Internal Revenue Service Advisory Council (IRSAC) issued its annual report for 2020, including recommendations to the IRS on new and continuing issues in tax administration. Online seminars from 2020 IRS Nationwide Tax Forums now available 18 new seminars from the 2020 IRS Nationwide Tax Forums are now available on IRS Nationwide Tax Forums Online. Tax Professionals may register and earn Continuing Education for these and other self-study courses. Streamlined Processing of Installment Agreements IRS is continuing to test expanded criteria for streamlined processing of taxpayer requests for installment agreements. The test has been extended to run through September 30, 2018. IRS Future State Learn more about the IRS Future State Initiative Annual Filing Season Program This program aims to recognize the efforts of non-credentialed return preparers who aspire to a higher level of professionalism. Meet the requirements by obtaining 18 hours of continuing education, including a six hour federal tax law refresher course with test, and you will receive an Annual Filing Season Program – Record of Completion from the IRS. Some Suspended or Disbarred Tax Practitioners Are Now Permitted to Obtain a PTIN and Prepare Tax Returns The Internal Revenue Service announced that some suspended or disbarred tax professionals are now permitted to obtain or renew preparer tax identification numbers (PTIN) and may prepare federal tax returns for compensation as a result of a recent court decision. Most Tax Return Preparers Must Use IRS e-file As of January 1, 2012, any tax return preparer who anticipates preparing and filing 11 or more Forms 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ and 1041 during a calendar year must use IRS e-file. Resources: PTIN Requirements for Tax Return Preparers Anyone who prepares or assists in preparing federal tax returns for compensation must have a valid PTIN before preparing returns. All enrolled agents must also have a valid PTIN. IRS Federal Tax Return Preparer Directory A searchable directory is available to help taxpayers find tax pros with credentials and other qualifications. IRS Training and Communication Tools for Tax Professionals Follow IRS on social media, attend a Tax Forum or local seminar, and watch tax videos or IRS webinars. Abusive Tax Schemes and Abusive Tax Return Preparers Tax professionals should be careful to protect their clients from tax scams. Those who do take part in scams could face owing more taxes and substantial penalties and interest. Interactive Tax Assistant (ITA) The Interactive Tax Assistant (ITA) is a resource that provides consistent answers to a limited number of tax law questions using a probe and response process. The ITA will guide you to accurate answers that are not readily addressed through simple Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Disaster Relief Resource Center for Tax Professionals Visit this resource center to learn how to re-establish your business after a natural disaster.Deceased Taxpayers – Probate, Filing Estate and Individual Returns, Paying Taxes Due Information to help you resolve the final tax issues of a deceased taxpayer and their estate.Standard Mileage Rates A summary of the optional standard mileage rates to be used in computing the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical, or moving expense purposes.Third Party Reporting Information Center - Information Documents Learn about information reporting requirements for merchant payment cards, cost basis reporting on securities sales and government payments. Why Pay Taxes? The Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments responds to some of the more common frivolous "legal" arguments made by individuals and groups who oppose compliance with the federal tax laws.IRS Advisory Committees General Information on the Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Exempt Entities (ACT), Art Advisory Panel, Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee (ETAAC), Information Reporting Program Advisory Committee (IRPAC), Internal Revenue Service Advisory Council (IRSAC), and Taxpayer Advocacy Panel (TAP).Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act FATCA will increase information reporting by foreign financial institutions, non-financial foreign entities, and certain U.S. persons holding financial assets outside the United States.Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative: Passive Foreign Income Company Investment Computations Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative: Passive Foreign Income Company Investment ComputationsSection 7216 Information Center Find information about Section 7216 including FAQs and revenue rulings.Valuation of Assets Job Aid for IRS Valuation Professionals to assist in reviewing or developing business valuations.Collection Procedures for Taxpayers Filing and/or Paying Late Links to helpful information for taxpayers who cannot file or pay by the due date.IRS Advancing e-file Study Key Messages IRS Advancing e-file Study Key MessagesThe American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009: Information Center Some of the credits and other provisions, which either expired at the end of 2011 or were set to change or expire at the end of 2012, were extended by the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA). Real Time Tax Initiative Learn about the Real Time Tax initiative that will focus on improving the taxpayer experience and improve overall tax compliance.