PTIN required by all preparers, deadline December 31
Tax preparers who expect to sign their name on tax returns come spring had better put their quills and inkwells aside until they hop online to the IRS's PTIN site and apply for or renew their very own Preparer Tax Identification Number  (PTIN). All paid preparers are required to have such a number - your Social won't do. All existing PTINs expire when the clock strikes 12 on the 31st of December, so get busy and get those renewed. Not surprisingly, there is a fee involved, so be prepared to fork over some bucks.
Meanwhile, if you're one of those people who recoil when hearing American Tax Relief advertisements bragging about all the people they help bilk the IRS, you can rejoice because a federal judge has shut them down , at least for now. Turns out ATR was actually costing its customers more than it was saving them. Go figure.
Regards to all,
Gail Perry, CPA
Managing Editor, AccountingWEB