Basic Principles of Ethics

Basic Principles of Ethics

The dictionary defines ethics as a system of moral values or a set of principles that define acceptable behavior.  As professional taxpayers these values and principles are outlined in Treasury Department Circular No. 230.  This course takes you through these principles and the consequences of not following the rules.


After completing this course, The Basic Principals of Ethics, practitioners should be able to:

  • recognize the meaning of the term “practice before the IRS” in the context of its definition in Circular 230
  • identify the categories of individuals who are eligible to practice before the IRS under the terms of Circular 230
  • recognize the limits in the scope of practice imposed on annual filing season program participants compared to enrolled Circular 230 practitioners
  • understand the duties and restrictions relating to practice before the Internal Revenue Service
  • recognize the due diligence criteria that must be applied by a practitioner
  • identify the forms and worksheets that must be used when preparing a claim for the Earned Income Credit, Child Tax Credit, Additional Child Tax Credit, Other Dependent Credit, American Opportunity Credit or Head of Household filing status and the related requirements for recordkeeping
  • identify the four different types of sanctions that may be imposed on practitioners for violating the regulations set out in Circular 230
  • recognize the meaning of incompetent or disreputable

Course Guidelines

  • The self-study format allows you to access the material online 24/7 and study at your own pace
  • All Self-Study courses are to be completed, and the final exam submitted, within 1 year from the date of purchase as shown on your invoice. No extensions will be allowed.
  • To obtain CE credit, the participant must obtain a passing score of at least 70%.  Test takers will not be provided feedback on incorrect answers
  • Complete your final exam at any time and get graded instantly. You can retake the exam up to three times at no additional charge.
  • Upon passing the exam, you will be able to print your own certificate of completion.


This course material deals with complex matters and may not apply to particular facts and circumstances.  As well, the material contained reflects laws and practices which are subject to change.  For these reasons, the course material should not be relied upon as a substitute for specialized professional advice