VA Tax News

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  • 25 Oct 2011 2:17 PM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON, DC, October 25, 2011 - The Accreditation Council for Accountancy and Taxation® (ACAT) is now accepting exam applications for the November 28 - December 19, 2011 testing period from industry professionals seeking to earn any of the following four credentials:

    • ABA Accredited Business Accountant/Advisor®
    • Accredited Tax Advisor® (ATA)
    • Accredited Tax Preparer® (ATP)
    • Accredited Retirement Advisor® (ARA)

    The exams are offered at computer-based testing centers throughout the United States.

    The ABA is a national credential that verifies the technical proficiency of practitioners in financial accounting, financial reporting, financial statement preparation, taxation, business consulting services, business law and ethics. The emphasis is on a practical approach to public accounting.The ABA is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), an independent resource recognized as the authority on accreditation standards for professional certification organizations and programs.

    The ATA is a premier national tax credential for practitioners who handle sophisticated tax planning issues, including planning for owners of closely held businesses, planning for the highly compensated, choosing qualified retirement plans and performing estate tax planning. Their expertise covers tax returns for individuals, business entities, fiduciaries, trusts and estates, as well as tax planning, tax consulting and ethics.

    The ATP is a credential for tax practitioners who demonstrate a thorough knowledge of the existing tax code and the preparation of individual tax returns with an expertise in comprehensive 1040 issues including supporting schedules, self-employed returns, and ethics. The ATP exam will not be offered beginning in 2012, although ACAT will continue to support recertification and promotion of this credential for tax practitioners who earned it before then.

     The ARA recognizes professionals who have a thorough knowledge of topics relevant to retirement planning and special issues of senior citizens including tax planning; preparing clients for retirement; tax preparation for decedents, the essentials of estates and trusts; financial planning; and applying your knowledge and skills in real-life situations when serving aging clients.

    ACAT accreditation provides evidence to clients, prospective clients, employers, and the public that the accredited professional has met national standards and has a mastery of accounting and taxation procedures and practices. These credentials demonstrate a mastery of accounting and tax procedures and practices that far exceed the proposed IRS registered tax return preparer standard.

    Candidate information with topic blueprints for each exam, credential information and exam registration, is available at

    The National Society of Accountants (NSA) offers preparatory course study guides for some of the exams. For more information, visit or call 800-966-6679.

    In Spring 2012, the exam testing dates will be June 16 - July 7, 2012. There will also be a separate window for colleges to proctor a paper exam in their schools from May 21- June 18, 2012.

    For more information about the exams and ACAT credentials, visit or call 888-289-7763.

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    ACAT is an independent accrediting and monitoring organization affiliated with the National Society of Accountants. ACAT accredits professionals in independent practice who have demonstrated measurable knowledge of the principles, practices, and ethical standards of accounting, taxation, information technology and related financial services. For more information, visit

  • 20 Oct 2011 9:20 AM | Anonymous

    The Department of Taxation receives numerous tax returns containing an enclosed "proof of receipt" letter and postage-paid envelope, asking that we return the letter as proof of receipt.  Unfortunately, we do not have the staff to handle this additional work.  If you would like your shipment tracked, we recommend that you use courier services, or mail methods that specialize in mail tracking.  The Department of Taxation is not in the position to acknowledge receipt of packages or shipments outside of standard mail services designed to accomplish this.

  • 07 Sep 2011 3:56 PM | Anonymous
    Richmond, VA - Governor Bob McDonnell today authorized Virginia Tax Commissioner Craig M. Burns to provide a one week filing and payment extension to certain individuals and businesses affected by Hurricane Irene. The extension will apply to taxpayers located in the Commonwealth who are unable to meet their filing obligations because the financial records they need to file their taxes, or their tax preparer, are located in cities and counties within the Commonwealth dealing with Hurricane Irene recovery or are otherwise unavailable because of severe hurricane damage.

    "Individuals and businesses in areas impacted by Hurricane Irene already have significant stresses and challenges facing them as they recover from the severe impacts of Hurricane Irene, including damage to businesses, loss of power, loss of business, and personal and professional hardships," Governor McDonnell said. "The Commonwealth is dedicated to assisting those whose lives and businesses were impacted by the storm, and this extension of tax deadlines is one action we can take to ease some of the burden on those working to rebuild."

    Individuals and businesses in these areas will automatically be allowed an additional seven days to file income and withholding tax returns and make tax payments that have a due date, or an extended due date, of Sept. 15, 2011. Tax returns and payments that are due on Sept. 15, 2011, will be allowed to be filed or paid on Sept. 22, 2011. The Virginia Department of Taxation will abate interest and any late-filing or late-payment penalties that would otherwise apply.

    The extension does not apply to returns or payments of sales tax or any other taxes administered by the Department of Taxation with a due date, or an extended due date after Sept. 15, 2011.

    Additional extensions and penalty waivers may be granted in hardship cases. Written requests for additional extensions should be emailed to for personal tax inquiries and for business tax inquiries, or directed to:

    Virginia Department of Taxation
    Customer Service Section
    Hurricane Irene Relief Extension
    P.O. Box 1115
    Richmond, VA 23218-1115

    The Department of Taxation will work with taxpayers in the affected areas to minimize the impact of any collection enforcement activities that may be initiated between Aug. 27, 2011, and Sept. 15, 2011. Taxpayers notified of pending actions should contact the Tax Department at (804) 367-8045 to discuss relief from actions that will create additional hardship in their recovery from the effects of the storm damages. The suspension of enforcement actions, however, will not stop the accrual of interest on delinquent accounts.

    Customers are welcome to use Live Chat on The Department of Taxation's website at to discuss account-specific questions.  If customers prefer asking questions by telephone, then individual income tax filers should call (804) 367-8031; business taxpayers should call (804) 367-8037 for assistance. Tax Bulletin 11-9 and other information is also available through the agency's website at

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