California Tax Education Council

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CTEC Registration Still Required

Wednesday, January 2, 2013 - 25 comments

A big question that continues to come up is if CTEC registration will still be necessary for unenrolled tax preparers (anyone who is not an attorney, CPA or enrolled agent) now that the IRS has implemented its own rules.

The answer is YES.CTEC registration is still required by state law.

The new IRS plan to register tax preparers does not override CTEC requirements.

CTEC registered tax preparers (CRTPs) who missed the October 31st renewal deadline now only have until January 15, 2013 to renew late. CRTPs who fail to meet that deadline will have to start over, complete the 60-hour qualifying education course and register as a new CRTP.

Failure to register with CTEC while preparing tax returns for a fee in California may result in penalties up to $5,000 from the Franchise Tax Board. Only attorneys, CPAs and enrolled agents are exempt from CTEC registration.

For more information regarding the new IRS registration requirements, visit


Tequila Boyd commented on Wednesday, January 15, 2014

I just finish my exam at Midnight, what is the latest time I have to register online for renewal on January 15th

CTEC replied on Wednesday, January 15, 2014

You have until midnight tonight to renew your CTEC registration late. The course must already be uploaded into the CTEC database. If you have further questions, please contact the CTEC office 877-850-2832.

Erica commented on Sunday, October 6, 2013

I just became an EA with the IRS in May. Do I still need to renew my CTEC? I have been searching for this questions and have not had any luck with answers and everyone says something different to me.

CTEC replied on Monday, October 7, 2013

No, you do not need to register with CTEC. EAs are exempt from CTEC. Email us at and explain you've become an EA. Please provide your EA number. That way our staff can take you out of our database so your registration won't appear as "expired" or "delinquent."

Enrique commented on Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sandra, the sad part is that the possibility of anyone sanctioning them or calling their attention on that matter is basically nil. I've complained about actions similar to that regarding Unenrolled Preparers both to CTEC and the IRS and no action has been taken against them. I'm talking about complaints submitted 3-4 years ago. Someone needs to start regulating these people like the DOI oversees and regulates Insurance Agents and Brokers and the DRE oversees and regulates Real Estate Agents and Brokers. I've submitted complaints about insurance agents in the past and they immediately receive a letter from the DOI regarding the complaint to make it good. Why can't we get the same type of responses in the tax preparation industry?

sandra cisneros sanchez commented on Tuesday, February 5, 2013

I was in at a a.c tax 1277 w. 6th st, suite B(951)738-1481 located in corona,and spoke with Ana Cecilia Melendez. I went in to receive a quote and the next day when I went back in they stated to me that they have done half their job and in order for me to receive my w-2 back I would have to pay them a fee of $30 i went to tax school in 2009 and I learned this was illegal being that it was the customers documents to begin with,I had to pay the fee and that money was originally for my babys diapers it was very upsetting that there are places like these out there. Thanks for reading Sandra Cisneros Sanchez (951)515-6975

CTEC replied on Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sandra- We are sorry to hear about your situation. We did not see the name you provided come up in our database. You can submit a complaint through our homepage. Click on "Report a Tax Preparer" and explain exactly what happened. The report will automatically go to the Franchise Tax Board, CTEC's enforcement partner. Enrique- Unfortunately we cannot say what happened with your past complaints, but we still encourage you to continue to report these issues to the Franchise Tax Board or through the "Report a Tax Preparer" portion of the CTEC website. All reports are read by FTB so please do not give up.

Jack Malloy commented on Saturday, February 2, 2013

CTEC has changed a number of deadlines over the past couple of years that it is difficult to keep track of. The Jan. 15 deadline is news to me. Between CTEC and the IRS, new regulations are screwing the tax preparers. We need to focus on our business, don't have time to read your blog or newsletter everyday. I believe and think others will agree that the Jan. 15 deadline should be lifted.

CTEC replied on Monday, February 4, 2013

Jack, This is the first time CTEC has ever changed its late renewal deadline. Again, the goal is to get noncompliant tax preparers into compliance before tax season.

Rios, Enrique commented on Friday, February 1, 2013

what a mess CTEC created ! need review your guidelines,procedures in office etc, once I received my certificated wrong name wrong agent. ! is CTEC necessary ? could get an Injunction !! will see

Maria Ramos commented on Thursday, January 31, 2013

I did not print my certificate because I did not see the option to do it on the screen. (Probably, I missed the icon or link) There is any way I could print it? I have tried it but I only could print the confirmation page.

CTEC replied on Friday, February 1, 2013

No, that option is no longer available. CTEC will send you a certificate within 4-6 weeks after you register. If it has been more than 6 weeks since you registered, call our office 877-850-2832.

dennis commented on Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Thank you! glad to get quick response.

Tammy commented on Monday, January 28, 2013

I have the same question as Dennis above. I completed my course in Dec. 2012 and have my insurance bond. Will I be able to register without a PTIN, since the IRS isn't issuing PTIN's as of Jan. 18, 2013?

CTEC replied on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Dennis and Tammy, Yes, you can. CTEC has revised its registration application to make PTINs "optional." Go ahead and register!

Dennis commented on Sunday, January 27, 2013

Completed my 60 hr 12-16-2012. Can I still register now? Even with the ptin site being out?

dennis nicolas commented on Sunday, January 27, 2013

I am a new applicant. Can I still apply even without the ptin site? Finished my 60 hour course 12-16-2012

Michelle commented on Thursday, January 24, 2013

This information was never communicated to me. My first hearing of such a thing was in the January 2013 CTEC News, which arrived in my mailbox AFTER the deadline. I couldn't possibly be the only CRTP this has happened to. I've asked around, and others are shocked! "CTEC registered tax preparers (CRTPs) who missed the October 31st renewal deadline now only have until January 15, 2013 to renew late. CRTPs who fail to meet that deadline will have to start over, complete the 60-hour qualifying education course and register as a new CRTP."

CTEC replied on Thursday, January 24, 2013

CTEC has actually included a notice in every newsletter regarding the new deadline for the past two years. We've also included it in blogs, whenever possible.

Harbans Singh 1/15/2013 commented on Tuesday, January 15, 2013

#A230951 ,I have sent my application for renewal on 1/09/2013, can you renew my registertion by 1/15/2013.

CTEC replied on Tuesday, January 15, 2013

CTEC now requires all registrations to be renewed online. CTEC no longer accepts applications by mail. Did you renew online? If so, it takes effect immediately. If not, go back to the homepage and click on "Preparer Registration and Personal Account."

Sonja L. Gingery commented on Monday, January 14, 2013

Hi, I too have been reassured that my certificate would be mailed to me. I have paid twice already. Please let me know if there is a problem. 4900 North Pt., Discovery Bay, CA 94505. 925-457-4518. CTEC #A168125.

CTEC replied on Monday, January 14, 2013

CTEC is looking into the issue. You can call the office at 877-850-2832 to reorder a certificate (no charge). Please explain to the staff member that you have already paid twice for a reprint. Again, we sincerely apologize for the delay.

Joseph D Zuffi commented on Thursday, January 10, 2013

# A146565 I am registered through 2013, but I have NEVER received anything (CTEC card.etc). Since Nov. I have called you TWICE and been assured that you would mail my certificate and card. Do I have to assume that the robot on your end of the line was lying to me about sending the documentation? 650 342 2604 1517 Balboa Ave Burlingame, CA 94010@

CTEC replied on Thursday, January 10, 2013

We sincerely apologize. Our records show we have sent the certificate to you. We will reprint the certificate today and mail it again. We verified we have the correct address on file so you should receive it soon.