2021 AFSP Program Requirements

New IRS program started for tax preparers

This new IRS Annual Filing Season (AFSP) program for tax preparers aims to recognize the efforts of non-credentialed return preparers who aspire to a higher level of professionalism. Meet the requirements by obtaining 18 hours of continuing education, including a six hour federal tax law refresher course with test, and you will receive an Annual Filing Season Program – Record of Completion from the IRS.

AFSP participants will also be included in a public database of return preparers. The Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications will include the name, city, state, zip code, and credentials of all attorneys, CPAs, enrolled agents, enrolled retirement plan agents and enrolled actuaries with a valid PTIN, as well as all AFSP – Record of Completion holders.

Complete Information at the IRS - For complete information select this link

How to obtain an AFSP - Record of Completion for the Filing Season 2021

  • Take 18 hours of continuing education from IRS-Approved CE Providers, (these hours must be completed by December 31, 2020 or they will NOT be accepted by the IRS) including:
    • a six (6) hour Annual Federal Tax Refresher (AFTR) course that covers filing season issues and tax law updates, as well as a knowledge-based comprehension test administered at the end of the course by the CE Provider;
    • ten (10) hours of other federal tax law topics; and
    • two (2) hours of ethics.


Summary of Program Requirements

Annual Filing Season Program Exemption Status Filing Season Annual Federal Tax Refresher Course and Test CE Credits Tax Law Update CE Credits Federal Tax Law CE Credits Ethics CE Credits Total CE Credits
Non-Exempt 2016 and beyond 6 0 10 2 18
Exempt 2016 and beyond 0 3 10 2 15


***Note that for Non-Exempt preparers, beginning with the 2016 Tax Season 18 hours of continuing education will be required to receive an Annual Filing Season Program – Record of Completion from the IRS.