Today is the last day of the year and also the last day for tax preparers to participate in the Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP). The AFSP is an IRS effort to recognize tax preparers who aspire to a higher degree of professionalism by completing a specific amount of continuing education and an Annual Federal Tax Refresher (AFTR) course. All courses must be approved by the IRS.
The benefits of completing the AFSP include:
Record of completion from the IRS
Listing in a IRS public directory of tax preparers with select qualifications
Retaining representation rights for returns you prepare (starting in 2016)
Receiving all the latest tax updates for the upcoming filing season
Ability to the use the AFSP as a designation on business cards, company letterhead and other marketing materials
The Annual Filing Season Program can provide preparers with a competitive advantage in an increasingly competitive industry as well as help preparers stay current with ever changing tax laws and updates.
Though the window for to receive the AFSP designation for the 2015 filing season is nearly closed, tax preparers can take advantage of the program for the next filing season.