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Notes from the Tax Practitioner Liaison

Public Service Bulletins

We provide bulletins to our customer service staff to help them respond to taxpayer contacts caused by law changes, system problems/changes, or other issues. As part of our commitment to transparency, we post redacted versions of these public service bulletins on our Website.

The bulletins are prepared exclusively for internal staff use and should not be confused with regulations, FTB Notices, or Legal Rulings, which constitute official FTB public notices. Increasingly, however, we are seeing these bulletins reprinted in other media with a suggestion that they can be relied upon as official public guidance. This confusion seems to arise partly from the document's name. To clarify that these bulletins are internal communications, we will be moving them from the Tax Professional/Practitioner Services area on our Website, and grouping them with Polices and Procedures, where we currently keep other internal information such as internal procedure manuals. They will continue to be accessible to the public; however, we hope that this change will help underscore that while posted on the Internet for informational purposes, these bulletins are internal guidance for use by FTB employees.

Conformity

Have you ever wondered how a federal legislative change affects your California tax return, or how it might change the California tax planning advice you give to your clients? You're not alone! Unfortunately, conformity is very complex and it can take hours, if not days or weeks to unravel federal legislation as it relates to the California code. As the tax practitioner liaison, I continually receive questions on whether or not California conforms to recent federal legislation.

Something we hope will help is the updated and improved conformity Webpage on the FTB Website. It will provide information on recently enacted federal bills, and pending California legislation. There will be answers to frequently asked questions, as well as a link to a conformity email address where you can submit questions. And soon you will be able to sign up for an email subscription service that will allow us to email you new conformity-related information. I will keep you posted on when it will be available.

Phone number correction

Last month we gave the practitioner hotline phone number as (916) 845-6377. This is actually the hotline's fax number.

The correct practitioner hotline phone number is (916) 845-7057.