Tax & Accounting Update is provided by Thomson Reuters and based on material published on Checkpoint, its online news and research platform. The Update is a quick-reference guide to the most pressing issues coming down the regulatory and administrative pipeline. Visit for further information and daily updates.

Tax News

IRS rolls out online power of attorney and tax information authorization forms.

The IRS announced that it has rolled out a new online option that will help tax professionals remotely obtain signatures from individual and business clients and submit authorization forms electronically. Tax professionals can now submit Forms 2848 and 8821 online, by following the instructions under “Submit Forms 2848 and 8821 Online” ( Tax professionals must have a Secure Access account, or create an account in advance of submitting an online authorization form. The taxpayer and professional must sign Form 2848. If the tax professional uses the new online option, the signatures can be handwritten or electronic. Form 8821 needs only the taxpayer’s signature; if using the new online option, the taxpayer’s signature can be handwritten or electronic. If the tax professional uses the electronic signature option for a new client, the tax professional must first authenticate the client’s identity. The IRS expects this new method will speed processing and authorization.


Georgia’s accounting chief named GASB director of research, technical activities.

GASB appointed Georgia’s state accounting officer, Alan Skelton, to be its director of research and technical activities. On April 1, Skelton will replace retiring director David Bean, who will leave the board after more than 30 years in the role. Skelton has worked with the GASB for years, having served on the Governmental Accounting Standards Advisory Council (GASAC), the board’s main body of advisors, since 2015, and as its vice chair since 2018. “I’m very pleased to welcome Alan to the GASB to serve as the director of research and technical activities,” GASB Chair Joel Black said in a statement. “I have known him for many years, served with him on the GASAC, and know him to be a tremendous leader. Alan shares my passion for the GASB’s mission, and brings to this role deep technical expertise and practical experience in governmental accounting and financial reporting.”


Advisory council to discuss post–COVID-19 workplan.

The IFRS Advisory Council held discussions on an on-site workplan for the global accounting rulemaker to adopt after the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions have lifted. COVID-19 social distancing restrictions could ease by August 31, as could work-from-home mandates at the IASB’s London headquarters according to the group’s agenda paper, “The Future of Work Optimising Collaboration, Concentration and Culture (3Cs) in a Post-Covid-19 World.” The discussions come as vaccines have been developed for COVID-19, thereby enabling social distancing mandates to be lifted. Several companies and organizations, however, are considering what will be the new normal; some have signaled they may change to hybrid home-office approaches to save overhead costs of office space and equipment rentals. If approved, the workplan would begin to be implemented in July, according to the agenda paper.