Section 7216 Tax Return Protections: Newest IRS Regs and Guidance

Complying With TD 9478 and New Revenue Rulings in Cross-Selling Services

Recording of a 110-minute CPE webinar with Q&A

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Conducted on Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Recorded event now available

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Course Materials

This course will offer guidance to accounting firms on permissible ways to market additional services to tax return clients and comply with the revised Sec. 7216 regs and recently effective TD 9478 temporary regs on acceptable promotions, client confidentiality, and client consents.


For the past year, confusion has persisted among advisory firms about permissible marketing cross-promotions to tax return clients under the revised Section 7216 regs that took effect in 2009. How quickly could such promotions be used, and how could tax clients give acceptable consent?

The IRS recently addressed some of the issues with temporary regs (TD 9478) effective Jan. 4, 2010 and associated Revenue Rulings 2010-4 and 2010-5). Return preparers now have guidance on information that can be used in solicitations, acceptable disclosures, and possible civil penalties.

Firms that prepare tax returns must master the latest IRS guidance as well as the previous Section 7216 revisions to maximize the effectiveness of their client marketing while observing required confidentiality and shielding return information from unauthorized parties.

Listen as our panel of veteran tax advisors reviews and analyzes the key terms of the new temporary regulations, the new guidance, and the 2009 revisions to Section 7216, focusing on what return preparers can and can't do with client return information.



  1. Regulatory and guidance background
    1. Historic restrictions on using client tax return info under Section 7216
    2. Revisions of Section 7216 regs effective Jan. 1, 2009
      1. Specific restrictions on cross-selling or cross-marketing
      2. Civil and criminal penalties
      3. Format and content of disclosure consents
      4. Methods to obtain or establish consent
  2. New regulations and guidance
    1. TD 9478 temporary regs
      1. Ability to use return info with limited consent, in some circumstances
    2. Revenue Ruling 2010-4
      1. Guidance on return preparer’s liability for misusing return info or sharing it with third party
    3. Revenue Ruling 2010-5
      1. Disclosure of return info to liability insurer
  3. Alternatives for cross-marketing services within restrictions of Section 7216 and guidance
    1. What is, isn’t permissible or advisable


The panel will address these and other important aspects of Section 7216:

  • Current restrictions: With what parties can tax return information be shared, and what specific information can they see?
  • Acceptable cross-promotions: What kinds of information should marketing messages contain, and what kinds are taboo?
  • Taxpayer consents: What formats are required, and when can return information be used for solicitation purposes without the client's explicit consent?
  • Effective marketing to existing clients: Within the restrictions of Section 7216 and associated guidance, how can tax professionals help maximize promotional efforts?


Jim Kurdziel
Jim Kurdziel
Senior Program Analyst and Technical Advisor, Electronic Tax Administration
Internal Revenue Service

He has 35 years of experience at the IRS as an auditor, manager and in other roles. Over the last 15 years, he has...  |  Read More

Gerard Schreiber, Jr.
Gerard Schreiber, Jr.
Schreiber & Schreiber CPAs

He focuses his tax and accounting work on smaller business and individual clients. He is a frequent writer and speaker...  |  Read More

Phillip Pillar
Phillip Pillar

Greenberg Traurig

He represents clients on international, federal and state tax matters before tax authorities and courts, and also...  |  Read More

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