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IRS urges thousands of Tennessee tax preparers to register now
November 16, 2010

The Internal Revenue Service is contacting nearly 23,000 Tennessee tax return preparers this week to remind them they must renew their Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) to qualify to prepare federal tax returns in 2011.

"New regulations require all paid preparers to apply or reapply for a PTIN before preparing federal tax returns in 2011," said IRS spokesman Dan Boone.

This week, the IRS is sending renewal reminder notices to 22,723 tax professionals in Tennessee who currently have PTINs. Recipients are urged to avoid any last minute rush by renewing their PTIN online now.

Tax professionals who received their PTIN prior to the new system launch on Sept. 28, 2010, as well as those who do not currently have a PTIN, must register using the IRS Tax Professional Sign-Up System at .

Registration, which generally takes 15-20 minutes, involves four simple steps:

• Create an account
• Complete the PTIN application
• Pay a $64.25 fee
• Get a PTIN (Current PTIN holders will generally be reassigned their same numbers.)

The nine-digit PTIN was an option created several years ago so tax preparers could avoid using their Social Security Number or employer ID number as identification on tax returns they prepare. The new requirement to use the PTIN is one of the main provisions in a new IRS oversight program to help regulate the tax preparation industry.

Everyone who is paid to prepare all or substantially all of any federal tax return or claim for refund must have a PTIN. The requirement applies to all tax return preparers, including those who are enrolled agents, Certified Public Accountants or attorneys.

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