AICPA Sues IRS to Stop Return Preparer Program

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has filed a federal lawsuit challenging the IRS’s voluntary tax return preparer program, blasting it as an “illegitimate exercise of government power” and calling for the court to declare the rule unlawful.

The IRS recently issued a rule for its Annual Filing Season Program, a voluntary initiative offering certification to unenrolled preparers who complete educational requirements, in the wake of losing a lawsuit in a ruling declaring an earlier attempt to regulate tax preparers as an overreach of power.

The IRS said in a statement it has the “authority to implement a voluntary continuing education program for uncredentialed tax return preparers, and this does not conflict with any administrative or legal requirements. We have reviewed the matter and believe that it does not violate the court’s decision in the Loving case.” AICPA, meanwhile, said in its filing that the IRS’s program represents an “obvious attempt to bypass the Court’s binding decision and to assume powers Congress has not given it.”

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