annual tax compliance kit

Our 2017 Annual Tax Compliance Kit is a comprehensive package of resources to help practitioners comply with tax laws and effectively serve their clients.  We have engagement letters, organizers, and checklists for individuals, partnerships, corporations, estates, trusts, gifts, exempt organizations, and employee benefit plans.  Additionally, we offer valuable practice guides on topics such as nexus, quality control, state considerations for individuals and businesses, and the business use of vehicles.

These resources are available exclusively to AICPA Tax Section members. Join the Tax Section today.

Purpose: An engagement letter is the contract between a client and a professional that governs the services to be delivered to the client (e.g., returns to be prepared). The following items should be addressed in engagement letters:

  • The scope and limitations of the engagement;
  • The applicable professional standards to be followed by the CPA firm;
  • The client’s and firm’s responsibilities;
  • The timing of the engagement;
  • Any limitations on the use or disclosure of tax return information;
  • The need for extensions of time to file tax returns and the related issues, including payment of any amounts due with these extensions and the liability for penalty and interest charges; and
  • Fee arrangements.

Additional risk allocation provisions may be included in the engagement letter or in a firm’s standard terms and conditions document.

Each engagement requires careful consideration in order to address its particular circumstances. We've provided sample engagement letters in Word format so that you can customize your letters to account for these specifics. Note that this year’s engagement letters are comprehensive and provided with no redactions. The letters now include optional paragraphs that can be included or omitted at your discretion. 

These sample engagement letters and sample terms and conditions document have been developed and provided by CNA, the endorsed underwriter of the AICPA Professional Liability Insurance Program. We encourage you to review your letters for completeness and accuracy with your firm's legal counsel. Also, consider consulting with your firm’s professional liability insurance carrier. 

For your convenience, download all engagement letters in a zip file.

Purpose: A tax organizer is a client-facing document meant to assist in the collection and submission of client information necessary to prepare a tax return. 

The below templates are provided in fillable PDF and in Word (for Word versions, see zip file). New this year! For the first time, you can now add your own company logo to the organizers in PDF before sending to your clients. Follow these how-to-steps to add value to your client-facing organizers.

To access all organizers quickly, a zip fileis available for download.

Purpose: These checklists are used to address issues related to a specific tax form, and are used by tax preparers and reviewers to ensure compliance with reporting and documentation, as well as to identify planning opportunities and potential exam or audit risks on a tax return.

The below checklists are provided in fillable PDF and in Word (for Word versions, see zip file).

To access all checklists quickly, a zip fileis available for download.

Purpose: Our practice guides are comprehensive publications on a specific topic or process that includes relevant guidance, recent developments and trends, best practices, and recommendations for workflow and documentation.

Terms and Notice for Readers

Access to the Annual Compliance Kit is intended as an individual benefit of Tax Section membership. The Annual Compliance Kit is created by and copyrighted to the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA), which reserves all rights. Except in the context of performing client services, reproduction, redistribution, republication, or resale of this product by the member granted access is prohibited. Should the Association omit or decline to enforce any aspect of these Terms of Use at any given time or instance, such non-enforcement does not constitute and should not be construed as a waiver of the Association’s rights as to any other or future instance. For more information about the terms of use for Annual Compliance Kit, or to request permission for a use which exceeds these limitations, please contact Licensing, Rights & Information Services at

The Annual Compliance Kit resources are designed as educational and reference material for the members of the Tax Section. They do not establish standards or preferred practices. Although much thought and effort have gone into the development of these guides, they are subject to change. These practice guides are issued as drafts only, and you retain responsibility for their final content. Please review them carefully and make any changes necessary for your specific use.

The prior year versions of the Annual Tax Compliance Kit are available in a zip file below:

2016      2015     2014