California Tax Education Council

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IRS Update: Annual Filing Season Program

Monday, March 2, 2015 - 0 comments

Did you participate in the new IRS voluntary Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP), but are not showing up in the Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers?

In February, the IRS reported to CTEC that more than half of all participants who qualified for the program (nationwide) have yet to sign the Circular 230 form— the final program requirement. 

Qualifying participants will not be included in the IRS database or receive a “Record of Completion” until they sign that form. The IRS reportedly emailed participants who failed to sign the Circular 230 form multiple times with instructions on how to complete the process.

Participants of the program are required to obtain a valid 2015 IRS Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN), pass the Annual Federal Tax Refresher (AFTR) course and test (if required), complete federal continuing education (CE) requirements, plus sign the Circular 230 consent form.

Some tax preparers, including CTEC Registered Tax Preparers (CRTPs), are exempt from the AFTR course. 

The deadline to participate in the program was December 31, 2014; however, the IRS is still allowing qualifying participants to sign the Circular 230 form late.

To complete the process:

  • Visit
  • On the main menu, select “AFSP-Record of Completion- Circular 230 Consent”
  • Follow the screen prompts to elect to participate
  • Within 24 hours, log in again to find your printable “Record of Completion” 

The IRS launched its online directory of tax preparers in early February. Tax preparers with PTINs who are not attorneys, CPAs, enrolled agents or AFSP participants are not included in the directory, nor are tax preparers who offer free services. 

Please visit for questions about the program.


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