Ethical Issues: A Tax Preparer’s Scope, Duties, and Best Practices

We all want to do the right thing. Here we’ll examine the ethical duties and sanctions covered by IRS Circular No. 230. We’ll also analyze real-world scenarios focusing on specific ethical issues you may encounter. Last Revision: April 2023

Prerequisites are not necessary to participate in this course and no advance preparation is needed.

Course Description

To help you understand your ethical responsibilities in representing clients before the IRS and in preparing their tax returns, the IRS has published Treasury Department Circular No. 230, which:

  •          Sets forth rules relating to the authority to practice before the IRS,
  •          Identifies the duties and restrictions relating to preparing returns for taxpayers, and
  •          Prescribes sanctions for violating the regulations.

This course will examine many of those rules, duties, and restrictions as well as the sanctions imposed for their violation. The course will present real-world scenarios focusing on specific ethical issues you may encounter. You will be asked to analyze the scenario, identify the ethical issues presented, and determine an appropriate response.


Affiliation* CPE Awarded Delivery Method Field of Study Course ID Sponsor ID
CPE Facts
NASBA 2 Self-Study Ethics N/A 103137
CTEC 2/0 Self-Study Ethics 3038-CE-0264 3038
IRS 2 Self-Study Ethics FQTGU-E-00561-23-S FQTGU
Texas State Board of Accountancy 2 Self-Study Ethics 100364 002921
Pennsylvania State Board of Public Accountancy 1 Self-Study Ethics N/A

* Individuals with other professional credentials should check with their state licensing board or accrediting organization to determine if this program meets their continuing education requirements.



Drake Software is an IRS-qualified sponsor of continuing professional education.


Drake Software is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website,

Drake Software has been approved by the California Tax Education Council to offer the Ethical Issues course, 3038-CE-0264, which provides 2 hours of federal credit and 0 hours of state credit towards the annual continuing education requirement imposed by the State of California. A listing of additional requirements to register as a tax preparer may be obtained by contacting CTEC at P.O. Box 2890, Sacramento, CA 95812-2890, at (877) 850-2832, or at


Drake Software is registered with the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy as a CPE sponsor. This registration does not constitute an endorsement by the Board as to the quality of our CPE program.

Course Policies

Send cancellation requests to Requests must be made within 30 days of purchasing the course. To be granted a full refund, you must not have completed and earned continuing education for the course. No refunds will be issued after the course expiration date. For more information regarding the refund policy or to address concerns or complaints regarding courses, contact the DrakeCPE support team at

Other Details
Last Revision April 2023
Course Expiration The CPE portion of this course expires one year from date of purchase