Chartered Tax Professional for California Residents

The Chartered Tax Professional for California Residents course will help you become qualified as a California Tax Preparer through the California Tax Education Council (CTEC). The course is composed of six modules in Federal income tax preparation that will prepare you for the Special Enrollment Examination (SEE), plus a California supplement. The Special Enrollment Examination (SEE) is a test that individuals can take to become an Enrolled Agent in the United States. The Enrolled Agent...

18 Months / 200 Course Hrs
Open Enrollment
Offered in partnership with your preferred school

University of the District of Columbia

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Course code: GES220

What you will learn

  • Practice as a qualified tax professional
  • Prepare tax returns for individuals, small businesses, corporations, partnerships, and sole proprietors
  • Conduct a professional tax preparation client interview
  • Provide tax planning for individuals and small business owners
  • Meet the IRS e-File and due diligence requirements for tax practitioners
  • Understand the ethical responsibilities of tax professionals
  • Prepare for the Special Enrollment Examination (SEE) exam

How you will benefit

  • Complete the modules of the CTP course and accumulate the required 500 hours of experience as a tax professional to qualify for the prestigious Chartered Tax Professional designation
  • Earn your CTP certificate
  • Gain the tax knowledge and experience to prepare for the IRS Enrolled Agent (EA) exam
  • Become qualified to prepare individual tax returns for almost all U.S. and California taxpayers

How the course is taught

  • Self-paced, online course
  • 18 Months to complete
  • Open enrollment, begin anytime
  • 200 course hours
  1. California Income Tax Preparation
    1. California CTEC Income Tax Supplement
      1. Electronic Filing
      2. W-2 and 1099 Forms
      3. Form 540 and 540A
      4. Filing Requirements
      5. Filing Status
      6. Exemptions and Dependents
      7. Dependent Care and Tax Credits
      8. Various Sources of Income
      9. Additions and Subtractions from Income
      10. Itemized Deductions
      11. Resident and Nonresident Returns
      12. Employee Business Expenses
      13. Sale of Real Estate
      14. Depreciation: MACRS and ACRS
      15. Community Property Rules
      16. Self-Employment
      17. Rental Property
      18. Capital Gains and Losses
      19. Ethics
      20. Penalties
      21. Extensions
      22. Amended Returns
      23. Political Activity Expenses
      24. Withholding on Nonresident Sales of Real Property
      25. Common Law Test for Employment
      26. Statutory Employees
      27. Independent Contractor Reporting Requirements
      28. Credit for Taxes Paid to Other States
      29. California Business and Professional Code
  2. Individual Income Tax Preparation
    1. Basic Income Tax Module
      1. Electronic Filing
      2. W-2 and 1099 Forms
      3. Form 1040 (1040 EZ/A)
      4. Interview Techniques
      5. Filing Requirements
      6. Filing Status
      7. Exemptions and Dependents
      8. Earned Income Tax Credit
      9. Due Diligence
      10. Child Care and Tax Credit
      11. Interest and Dividends
      12. Other Income
      13. Adjustments to Income
      14. Moving Expenses
      15. Itemized Deductions
      16. IRAs and Retirement Plans
    2. Intermediate Income Tax Module
      1. Employee Business Expenses
      2. Sale of Real Estate
      3. Depreciation: MACRS and ACRS
      4. Self-employment
      5. Rental Property
      6. Capital Gains and Losses
      7. Education Expenses and Plans
      8. Education Tax Benefits
      9. Ethics
      10. Kiddie Tax
      11. Taxpayer Relief Act of 1977
      12. Tax Saving Ideas
      13. Alternative Minimum Tax
      14. Office-in-Home
      15. Injured and Innocent Spouse
      16. Penalties
      17. Extensions
      18. Amended Returns
    3. Advanced Income Tax Module: Level I
      1. Earned Income Credit
      2. Clergy
      3. Investments
      4. At-risk Rules
      5. Passive Activities
      6. Injured and Innocent Spouse
      7. Tax Credits, Special Credits
      8. COGS, Business Start-up
      9. Depreciation, Amortization, and Section 179
      10. Employee Business Expense
      11. Office in Home
      12. Auto Expenses
      13. Self-employment Tax
      14. Statutory Employees
      15. Capital Gains and Losses
      16. Basis of Property
      17. Sale of Stock
      18. Installment Sales
      19. Rental Properties
      20. K-1s and 1099s
      21. Sale of Business Property
      22. Estimated Taxes
      23. Extensions
    4. Advanced Income Tax Module: Level II
      1. Amended Tax Returns for Individuals
      2. Special Needs and Concerns of Seniors
      3. Tax Issues for High-income Taxpayers
      4. Net Operating Losses
      5. Schedule D: Special Issues
      6. Tax Issues for Divorced Taxpayers
      7. Tax Planning Tips and Strategies
      8. Responding to the IRS
      9. Part-year Resident State Tax Preparation Principles
      10. Nonresident Alien Returns: Form 1040NR
  3. Small Business Income Tax Preparation
    1. Introduction to Small Business Tax Preparation
      1. Business Types
      2. Accounting Methods
      3. Financial Statements
      4. Business Income
      5. Schedule C
      6. COGS and Inventory
      7. Depreciation
      8. Section 179 Deduction
      9. Contractor vs. Employee
      10. Sale of Business Property
      11. Partnerships
      12. Corporations: C, S, LLC
      13. Employee Taxes
      14. Excise Taxes
      15. Estate Taxes
      16. Extensions
      17. Estimates
      18. Employee Benefits
      19. Retirement Plans
    2. Small Business Income Tax Course: Level II
      1. Understanding the Balance Sheet
      2. Partnership Issues
      3. Corporation Issues
      4. General Business Credits
      5. Tax Issues Related to Buying a Business
      6. Sale or Liquidation of Business
      7. Profit or Loss From Farming: Schedule F
      8. Amended or Corrected Business Returns
      9. What to Do When You Owe the IRS?
      10. Tax Preparation for Non-profits: 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4), 501(c)(6), etc.

Instructor support is provided through email by experienced practicing tax professionals employed by Peoples Income Tax, Inc., a sister company of The Income Tax School.


A high school diploma or equivalent is a prerequisite for this course. Accounting and specific math skills aren't required, just the aptitude to work with numbers and people and to read and interpret the tax laws.

If you are taking this course to begin a career in taxation you will need to meet the following requirements:

  • Complete Comprehensive Tax Course (located within the course)
  • Register with the IRS and get a PTIN
  • Begin preparing tax returns as a tax preparer

Please note that your continuing education requirements will begin once your PTIN has been issued.


Hardware Requirements:

  • This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 8 or later.
  • Mac: macOS 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.


  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.

Instructional Material Requirements:

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment. The following materials will be shipped to you approximately 7-10 business days after enrollment:

  • Federal Forms
  • Federal Worksheets
  • Instructions
  • Publication
  • Tax Preparer Resources

Once you've successfully completed each course (and your final exam has been graded), you'll need to fill out the Request for Certificate of Completion. Your instructor will then provide you with a certificate of completion by mail. Your CTP certificate will be issued after you've completed all courses with an average grade of 80% or more and have documented the 500 hours experience needed to qualify for the CTP designation.

This course is open enrollment, so you can register and start the course as soon as you are ready. Access to your course can take 24-48 business hours.

This course is self-paced and open enrollment, so you can start when you want and finish at your own pace. When you register, you'll receive eighteen (18) months to complete the course.

The time allotted for course completion has been calculated based on the number of course hours. However, if you are unable to complete the course, contact the student advising team to see what options you may have available to work out a suitable completion date. Please note that an extension fee may be charged.

Our courses are designed to accommodate various learning preferences. Depending on the course structure, you may get different forms of support. Self-paced courses are designed to be user-friendly and independent, minimizing the need for external support. In courses with instructors, our direct platform support feature includes opportunities for questions, discussions, and remediation, with email and phone support available for select courses. Our student advising team is available to guide you on program requirements and administrative requests, but they do not provide assistance with course content. Our goal is to provide you with the necessary support for success, whether it's through self-paced exploration, direct communication, or guidance from our advising team.

Upon successful completion of the course, you will be awarded a Certificate of Completion.

This course will provide you with the skills you need to obtain an entry-level position in most cases. Potential students should always do research on the job market in their area before registering.

This course is non-credit, so it does not qualify for federal aid, FAFSA and Pell Grant. In some states, vocational rehab or workforce development boards will pay for qualified students to take our courses. Additionally, some students may qualify for financial assistance when they enroll, if they meet certain requirements. Financing is available from select schools. Learn more about financial assistance.

If you have questions that are not answered on our website, representatives are available via LIVE chat. You can also call us at 1-877-221-5151 during regular business hours to have your questions promptly answered. If you are visiting us during non-business hours, please send us a question using the "Contact Us" form.

Yes. This course qualifies for CPE credit for CPAs.

Yes. This California version of our CTP course includes the curriculum approved by the California Tax Education Council (CTEC) for qualifying education required for tax preparers to become licenses to practice in California.

This California CTP course is approved by CTEC as a qualifying course for California. There are additional requirements to become a tax preparer in California. Please visit the CTEC website for more information.

The Income Tax School is certified by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) as a private career school and is subject to the same standards as Virginia colleges governed by SCHEV. We are also a sponsor of the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) to provide CPE for CPAs. We're approved by the Office of Professional Responsibility at the Internal Revenue Services as provider of qualifying continuing education for IRS Registration Tax Return Preparers (RTRPs) and Enrolled Agents (EAs). This approval does not extent to licensees of The Income Tax School. We're approved by the Oregon Board of Tax Service Examiners.

The Income Tax School's programs were developed initially 19 years ago to recruit and train tax prepares for our multi-office practice in Virginia. Our curriculum is written and updated annually be experienced practicing tax professionals. All of the Income Tax School's programs are provided online in an interactive format with instructor support by email rather than by traditional home-study correspondence. We provide learning objectives, lesson quizzes with instructional feedback, and auto-graded exams. Although all of the student textbook content is online, we also provide a hard copy of the student text for convenience and future reference at no additional charge. Our programs are high-quality and are designed to provide students with the knowledge necessary to prepare tax returns professionally.

Income Tax School (ITS)
The Income Tax School (ITS) is a national leader in tax preparation programs and training. ITS publishes educational materials as well as management manuals and webinars. The school also offers numerous tax training courses, such as continuing education seminars and tax certificate programs. Its Chartered Tax Certificate Program can help you master complicated tax preparation concepts and will give you a competitive advantage with any employer—and you can prepare for it through a certified course with us.