(a) In general.
(1) Each person who employs one or more signing tax return preparers to prepare any return of tax or claim for refund of tax, other than for the person, at any time during a return period shall satisfy the requirements of section 6060 of the Internal Revenue Code by -
(i) Retaining a record of the name, taxpayer identification number, and principal place of work during the return period of each tax return preparer employed by the person at any time during that period; and
(ii) Making that record available for inspection upon request by the Commissioner.
(2) The record described in this paragraph (a) must be retained and kept available for inspection for the 3-year period following the close of the return period to which that record relates.
(3) The person may choose any form of documentation to be used under this section as a record of the signing tax return preparers employed during a return period. The record, however, must disclose on its face which individuals were employed as tax return preparers during that period.
(i) For purposes of this section, any individual who, in acting as a signing tax return preparer, is not employed by another tax return preparer shall be treated as his or her own employer. Thus, a sole proprietor shall retain and make available a record with respect to himself (or herself) as provided in this section.
(ii) A partnership shall, for purposes of this section, be treated as the employer of the partners of the partnership and shall retain and make available a record with respect to the partners and others employed by the partnership as provided in this section.
(b) Return period defined. For purposes of this section, the term return period means the 12-month period beginning on July 1 of each year.
(c) Penalty. For the civil penalty for failure to retain and make available a record of the tax return preparers employed during a return period as required under this section, or for failure to include an item in the record required to be retained and made available under this section, see § 1.6695-1(e).
(d) Effective/applicability date. This section is applicable to returns and claims for refund filed after December 31, 2008.