According to the IRS:
As of Friday, January 18, 2013, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia has enjoined the Internal Revenue Service from enforcing the regulatory requirements for registered tax return preparers. In accordance with this order, tax return preparers covered by this program are not currently required to register with the IRS, to complete competency testing or secure continuing education. The ruling does not affect the regulatory practice requirements for CPAs, attorneys, enrolled agents, enrolled retirement plan agents or enrolled actuaries.
The Internal Revenue Service, working with the Department of Justice, continues to have confidence in the scope of its authority to administer this program. It is considering how best to address the court’s order and will take further action shortly. In the meantime, please remember to check the webpage at www.irs.gov/taxpros. As additional information becomes available, it will be posted there.
On January 23, 2013 the IRS filed a motion to suspend the injunction entered on January 18, 2013. The IRS stated in this motion that they intend to file an appeal within 30 days.
What If I Already Paid To Take The RTRP Exam?
The IRS has suspended all testing at this time. Therefore, even if you have paid all fees and/or scheduled your test date, you will not be able to take the RTRP Competency Test. As of January 24, 2013, the IRS has not commented on refunding any testing fees paid.
What You Should Do Now
Continue to take your 15 hours of continuing education (CE). While CE is voluntary right now, it may be required again if the IRS is able to appeal the decision with the court and reinstate the program in its original form.
Consider upgrading your RTRP system to the EA system (special rates are given for previous RTRP customers). The EA designation gives you many of the same rights as the RTRP designation. If you take the EA exam, you will have no need to take the RTRP exam (other than for marketing purposes) if it is reinstated. You can learn more about the EA exam and Gleim EA Review Systems.
Many candidates are choosing to finish their review of the RTRP course, understanding it covers content the IRS expects tax professionals to be current on. Many candidates are also choosing to complete their CE to stay up to date and increase their knowledge.
Do You Have Any Questions?
Team Gleim is here to help answer your RTRP exam and RTRP CE questions. We can also advise you on whether or not you should consider taking the EA exam. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800.874.5346.