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EA Initial Enrollment Cycle Overview

Help for new Enrolled Agents

What is the "initial enrollment cycle"?

Your re-enrollment date is based on the last digit of your social security number.

When you first become an enrolled agent, the period up until your first re-enrollment date is considered your "initial enrollment cycle," and it is normally less than 3 years.

  • EXCEPT if you receive your initial enrollment between November 1st and December 31st of the third year of an enrollment cycle, you will renew after the first full renewal period, and your intitial cycle will have 73-74 months in it.

CPE Requirements for the initial enrollment cycle

New Enrolled Agents should complete an average of 2 hours of CPE for each month enrolled during the enrollment cycle.

An EA must complete 2 hours of Ethics per calendar year, regardless enrollment date. The ethics hours are included in the total CPE hours required.

How many CPE hours will I need?

Review the chart for your SS# to see hours needed and due date of renewal.

I am in my initial enrollment cycle and

My Social Security number ends in 0, 1, 2 or 3

My Social Security number ends in 4, 5 or 6

My Social Security number ends in 7, 8 or 9 or I do not have a Social Security number

Do I have to take exactly 2 hours of CE each month?

No.  The CE requirement is calculated on the basis of 2 hours per month, but you can take your CE at any time during the calendar year.  For example, if your enrollment date is in Septemeber, you are enrolled for 4 months of the year and need 4 x 2 = 8 hours of CE by December 31st of that year.

If I take more than my requirement in one year, can I carry over the excess CE to the next year?

No.  There is no carryover of CE credit when you are in your initial enrollment period.  If you take more hours than the average 2 hours per month of enrollment, those hours will not count towards your total period requirement.  Once you are past your initial enrollment period (you have renewed your Enrolled Agent license at least one time), you can carryover up to 24 CE hours each year.  See more details about the standard enrollment cycle here.

Will courses I took before receiving my EA License count towards EA CPE requirements?

No, any courses completed prior to the effective date of your license cannot be used to satisfy Enrolled Agent CPE requirements.

Will I receive a renewal notice from the IRS?

The IRS is apparently no longer mailing notices to remind you of your upcoming renewal.  Go ahead and mark you renewal date on your calendar.  Your renewal can then be filed between November 1st and January 31st.

"Failure to receive notification from the Director of the Office of Professional Responsibility of the renewal requirement will not be justification for the individual's failure to satisfy this requirement."
--Treasury Dept. Circular No. 230

You still should submit an address change if you have moved

Common mistake when filing renewal

Even though your Enrolled Agent license card shows an expiration date of April 1, 20xx, your renewal is due by January 31st of the renewal year.  This January due date gives the IRS 2 months to process the renewals and mail you a new license.

 How to file and pay

Option #1:  File by mail and pay by check

You can fill out form 8554 online and print the filled out form to mail, along with your check.

Option #2:  File and pay electronically

Fill out the form at www.pay.gov and submit your payment.

We recommend filing and paying electronically (option #2) as the IRS is able to process your renewal quickly.  We have heard reports from our EA students that mailing your 8554 renewal can cause the renewal to take 3 months or more for processing.  

What is the cost of renewal?

Effective March 31, 2011 the Enrolled Agent renewal fee was reduced to $30 (every 3 years).

question
Questions? Comments? We know the CPE requirements for the initial enrolment period can be confusing--please call us (877-738-6273) if you need any clarification.

Yes we report your CE hours to the IRS We do report your CE hours earned to the IRS electronically.  We are an approved IRS CPE provider for Enrolled Agents and Tax Preparers.

Why EAs take our courses

"I loved the convenience of FunCPE: printing out the study materials and tests, entering the test answers online at my convenience and receiving the e-mailed CPE certificates. I liked being able to work off line and then complete the tests online."
--Louanda Feather, EA (North Canton, OH)

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"Very well organized, the questions were illustrative of the text content and the rules and regulations for which they were pertinent.

I will absolutely be back on your site, I have purchased several more exams, and plan to use them very soon."
--Frank B. Howard, EA (Ukiah, CA).

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"Still the best CPE site . . . and thanks for not charging a fortune Thank you again. . . still the best CPE site . . . and thanks for not charging a fortune. I need 92 CPEs by next year's end, so I will see you again. Great people, communication is intelligent and very respectful and polite. Really appreciate this. Intend to use your company often. Thanks.
--E. M., EA (Salisbury, MD)

Which FunCPE courses quailify for EA CPE?

As per the rules outlined in Treasury Department Circular No. 230, qualifying Enrolled Agent CPE must be in the areas of:

Federal taxation |  Federal tax related matters |  Ethics (2 hours per year)

All FunCPE  tax courses qualify for EA CPEas well as our ethics courses.

Click on links to choose:

Tax courses using video  |  Tax courses using books  |  Tax Update Course  |  Ethics Course

FunCPE exams are available online 24/7 to help you meet your CPE requirements on time. Purchase books separately or borrow from library!