"Beginning Jan. 1, 2016, rules about who may represent clients before the IRS will change. Attorneys, certified public accountants, and enrolled agents will continue to have full representation rights for all clients before all IRS offices.
Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion holders will have limited representation rights, meaning they can represent clients whose returns they prepare and sign, but only before examination, customer service representatives, and the Taxpayer Advocate Service. (To have limited representation rights, you must participate both in the year of return preparation and the year of representation.)
Other tax return preparers who do not participate in the Annual Filing Season Program will not be permitted to represent any clients before the IRS for tax returns and claims for refund prepared and signed after Dec. 31, 2015.
The IRS remains committed to the principle that all persons who prepare federal tax returns for compensation should be required to establish minimal competency and take annual continuing education training. The IRS will continue to pursue the necessary legislative authority to advance this goal. Taxpayers deserve top-quality and ethical service from all tax professionals."
Bravo IRS. So what does this mean for you?
It means that it will be easier for you to weed through the over 400,000 uncredentialed tax return preparers to determine who is competent to represent you.