CPAs: Don’t Fear the RTRP

Should CPAs be afraid of registered tax return preparers overthrowing them as the “United States of the tax world”? I don’t think so, but two of my colleagues do.

Bruce McFarland and Robert Flach both feel that the new RTRP designation will change public perception about CPAs being “tax experts.”

Even the AICPA seems to be on-board with this idea that RTRPs will overshadow CPAs.

I guess I’m skeptical (and cynical) by nature.

I’m not buying the argument that RTRPs are going to put pressure on CPAs in public perception.

I do think the previously unlicensed (who will now be RTRPs) will get more respect. But I’m not sure it’s a zero-sum game where RTRPs gain respect while CPAs lose respect.

I still think the CPA designation is golden in the tax world. As an enrolled agent, it pains me to write that. But it’s true.

Maybe I’m naive. Or maybe I just happen to practice in a place where I’m not hearing a lot of buzz about the RTRP designation.

But I’m just not buying the RTRP revolution … yet.