Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP)

AFSP CPE Overview

We offer low cost cpe courses for the AFSP, EA, and all IRS Tax Preparers on current tax topics in an entertaining format.

We'll admit it is hard to make tax courses fun, but we do try!

FunCPE is an Approved Continuing Education Provider for Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion continuing education classes

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IRS Approved CE Sponsor Approval-2018-2019

Approved CE provider EA CPE
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Review our IRS sponsor approval letter as well as print it out for your records if desired.

 

History of the AFSP

2011  The IRS's initial program of testing and professional designation for tax preparers was created in 2011 and called the Registered Tax Return Preparer (RTRP) program.  This program was suspended in January 2013, and has now been discontinued.  Tax preparers who passed the RTRP exam are classifed as "exempt" and have a reduced number of CE hours required to participate in the AFSP.

The IRS Return Preparer Office (RPO) announced the voluntary Annual Filing Season Program in July 2014.  Initially they referred to it as the Annual Filing Season Certificate, but the term "certificate" was dropped and it was changed to "program."  You now can receive a "record of completion" but they are careful not to refer to it as a "certificate."  Most likely the IRS wants to avoid any suggestion that you are a "certified tax preparer" or anything that might be confused with a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

 

In August 2018, a suit challenging the authority of the IRS to conduct the AFSP program was settled in favor of the IRS.  The AICPA had brought a suit claiming that the AFSP credentialling program harmed CPAs. The AICPA argued that the Record of Completion "confuses" consumers and causes them to patronize unenrolled preparers instead of licensed CPAs.  They also argued that the AICPA members incur complicance costs of the time and cost of unenrolled preparers in their employe who choose to participate in the Program.

The IRS won the suit with the argument that Congress enacted the program to protect consumers in need of tax service.

 

The IRS is pursuing congressional authorization for the IRS to make minimum continuing education courses for tax preparers mandatory, rather than voluntary as it is now. 

What courses do I need to get the AFSP?

Review the CE requirements for the AFSP program here.

Some students have asked why the number of hours required was lower the first year (2014) the IRS began the AFSP program.

Because the program was started in the middle of the year in 2014, the IRS reduced the number of CE hours required to be completed by December 31, 2014, for the "2015 filing season." 

Review the "Am I Exempt or Non-Exempt" article to determine whether you are "exempt" or "non-exempt" from the 6-hour Annual Filing Tax Refreshers (AFTR) course here.

Questions?

We welcome you as an Annual Filing Season Program tax professional  to our site and would like to serve your needs better. Please contact us with any suggestions for new course topics for ASFP courses specifically, or any other questions or information you think we should add to our website information.

question

We know the AFSP regulations can be confusing.
If you have any questions about the CPE requirements or our courses, please don't hesitate to contact us by phone: 877-738-6273 (toll-free) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to let us know how we can help you.

For more information about Tax Preparer licensing, you can also view the IRS website page on the AFSP requirements directly.