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What is NFPA 70E and Why Do I Need to Know About It?

What is NFPA 70E and Why Do I Need to Know About It?

NFPA 70E is the result of several years of research and development. O.S.H.A. (the Occupational Health and Safety Administration) realized that there was no real standard to implement electrical safety in the workplace and requested that the NFPA provide documentation that would properly and correctly assist OSHA with administration of safety procedures.

A direct result of the request to provide this document is the new Flash Protection Standard (provided in NFPA 70E).

Many workers have been flashed, shocked, maimed, and even lost their lives either as a result of electrocution or as a result of the Arc Flash Hazard. Not previously studied, it has now become very evident that a short circuit can cause many things to happen very quickly and in a chain reaction.

Let’s walk through a possible scenario.

1) An electrician is troubleshooting a 480 volt disconnect and attempting to dislocate a defective part. While using a screwdriver, the screwdriver slips and crosses two phases causing a 480 phase to phase short circuit.

2) As soon as the short circuit is made, an arc flash occurs (temperatures upwards of 20,000 degrees. Skin can only take 120 degree heat before major damage occurs.

3) As the screwdriver and the disconnect parts begin to arc another even more dangerous phenomenon occurs. The copper and steel both begin melting and attempt to eliminate the short circuit by forcing themselves apart (arc blast). Another words, molten metal spews away from the disconnect directly into the face and eyes of the worker.

4) Another result of the arc blast is the force cause by the rapid expansion of the air as the Arc Blast occurs. This expansion can easily be enough to throw a worker back sometimes even across the room. This forces the air out of the lungs.

5) If the air is forced out of the lungs, the natural reaction is to gasp for air, thus ingesting gas , molten metal, and vapors into the nose, throat, and even lungs.

6) Depending on the severity of this chain reaction, personnel can receive life altering damage and even death.

The reason for NFPA 70 E is to address this type of occurrence and to provide standards for Electrical Safety in this and other scenarios to provide practices that will better prepare and protect personnel from both Electrical Arc Flash and electrocution.

This standard also addresses the need and correct procedures for Electrical Work Permits, proper Lock Out Tag Out Procedures, and much more. Any person working in or around electrical equipment is affected by 70 E.

Also addressed are proper installation methods that limit or significantly reduce the exposure to electrical hazards. These procedures provide both methods and prescribe P.P.E. to safely perform many tasks on energized equipment.

Because electricity is dangerous and electricians  encounter many hazards that may or may not be able to be addressed through Electrical safety talks or electrical safety tips, many states are mandating electrical continuing education that incorporates NFPA 70 E.…

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APA Continuing Education: Methods of Study

APA Continuing Education: Methods of Study

For those who aren’t in the know, the American Psychological Association has for a long time provided several methods of further learning on their website and through the association. APA continuing education comes in a number of forms, each of them dedicated to providing the best possible learning format for a busy mental health professional. If you are such a professional and are looking for the most convenient way to further your learning, the APA surely has a program or two that you could benefit from.

One of the most popular formats for APA continuing education is their online academy. They have spent quite a lot of time and money into putting together comprehensive online courses that cover a number of subjects. For instance, they offer a course in clinical supervision, one on chronic fatigue syndrome, and one on autism just to name a few. These courses differ somewhat between subjects, but they offer any professional the flexibility and comprehensive learning they require in an online learning format. The courses make use of not only text-based learning, but also the wide variety of multimedia that a good instructor will take advantage of to round out a class.

Those who aren’t comfortable with e-learning are also welcome to enjoy the many book-based APA continuing education opportunities. The association provides over 100 book-based courses in a variety of subjects, designed to stimulate and educate the psychologist interested in expanding their knowledge of the field. The books are authored by experts in the field of mental health and tailored to meet the needs and expectations of a demanding student body. Subjects include, but are far from limited to, clinical hypnosis, meth addiction, and impulsivity.

For those professionals who learn better by listening to an instructor (rather than by quietly reading the material on their own), they offer a series of DVD courses as well. These programs cover such courses as drug addiction, cognitive therapy, and more.

For anyone who is interested in APA continuing education, there are more than enough programs to satisfy even the most curious mind. If, however, you aren’t finding everything you need, keep in mind that the sky is the limit when it comes to furthering your professional development in the world of psychotherapy. There are a number of ways to continue your education, whether it be through online material, medical journals, seminars, or college classes. Find out what is available in your area and your field and make the most of the world of materials at your disposal.…

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After Dealing With IRS for Taxpayers, Enrolled Agents Might Be Needed For State Audit Too

After Dealing With IRS for Taxpayers, Enrolled Agents Might Be Needed For State Audit Too

Although an enrolled agent certificate is a federal designation for dealing with the IRS, the same tax expertise is often required for handling state income tax matters. In fact, as state governments are struggling for revenue to meet their fiscal obligations, the audit of a state income tax return is just as likely as an IRS examination.

Although EA continuing education requirements address federal tax subjects, enrolled agents are wise to also complete some courses on state income tax. In many cases, state tax auditors are even pursuing former residents. This is especially common for years when taxpayers moved and thus earned partial income in different states.

Income tax return preparation for multiple states in one year requires correct division of income among the distinctive locations. Whether mistakes are intentional or not, states expect tax on the income earned in their jurisdictions. The Illinois Department of Revenue recently added 50 auditors to its staff. Connecticut increased it audits of state income tax returns by 10 percent in 2011. Audits of state tax returns are also increasing in California, New York, and New Jersey.

Updated computer programs are able to compare shared information with the IRS on federal tax returns. To keep up with accurate tax reporting enrolled agent software needs to properly compile income data by state. Of particular interest to the various states are non-residents with real estate in the state or residents with rental property in another state. Taxpayers holding interests in trusts or partnerships with properties in various states are also targets for scrutiny.

Every state has distinctive tax rules. For example, New York has pursued income tax from individuals who have seasonal residences within the state. New Jersey is examining small businesses owned by individuals living in neighboring states. California also closely follows anyone who earns business income in that state despite having headquarters elsewhere.

Individuals with employer stock options have triggered state tax audits. This occurs when they move to another state after the option grant and before full vesting. Many states take a tax bite on equity compensation that was granted to state residents even when they move out-of-state before realizing the income.

Not all tax notices from states are accurate. In many cases, taxpayers can support claims that their state income tax returns were accurate. However, these are cases where enrolled agents can provide the same assistance as they deliver in dealing with the IRS.

IRS Circular 230 Disclosure

Pursuant to the requirements of the Internal Revenue Service Circular 230, we inform you that, to the extent any advice relating to a Federal tax issue is contained in this communication, including in any attachments, it was not written or intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (a) avoiding any tax related penalties that may be imposed on you or any other person under the Internal Revenue Code, or (b) promoting, marketing or recommending to another person any transaction or matter addressed in this communication.…

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Things to Consider When Starting a New Business

Things to Consider When Starting a New Business

Starting a new business is a very exciting but challenging experience. All the right tools need to be in place for it to be successful. The owner must be able to delegate, lead, and manage others. The product must be priced right, marketed correctly, and targeted to the correct customers. There are the few exceptions where business owners do not go to school, but for the most part they will have at least a bachelor’s degree from college. Higher education can help an owner make the correct business decisions no matter how small or large the company is. In this article we are going to discuss some of the key success factors you need to be successful when starting a new business.

First and foremost, you need capital. Every successful start-up company has both human capital and money to spend. One of the main reasons companies do not succeed is because they run out of money within the first three years. You need enough money for marketing, overhead, and salaries for at least five years. Sometimes it takes companies that long to turn a profit. Also, every president of a company needs the right staff working for him. They must be knowledgeable in their field and dedicated to success.

Once you have capital in place you need to market the right product to the right audience. What kind of product are you offering? What is the price point? What are your competitors doing? These are all things to consider when marketing your new product. Always sell your features of the product. It is OK if your product is a little more expensive than the competition if the targeted audience is willing to pay the difference because of added benefits your product offers. For instance, are you selling a camera that takes pictures faster with higher resolution than your competition? If you sell the features, the audience will buy.

These are just a couple of the major factors a new business must have. Of course, there are many more. A well-built business plan, strong employees, and enough capital is a great start to a successful company. Once you start turning a profit make sure to invest wisely. Are you going to save your money or try to grow your business? Sometimes it is smart to hire a consultant to help you make these tough decisions. They are trained to show you how to expand your business in an efficient manner.…

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What Is a Graduate Degree?

What Is a Graduate Degree?

If you have your undergraduate degree and are looking to take your career to the next level, you may consider getting a graduate degree. There are many different universities and programs you can choose from. Some are even 100 percent online! So, what is a graduate degree and why is it important?

Graduate degrees consist of master’s and doctorate degrees. You must have an undergraduate degree in order to participate in a graduate program. Whereas, undergraduate coursework is typically general in nature, graduate coursework is very specific and particular to one field of study. The length of the program varies by institution, but most can be completed in two to three years.

There are many reasons to get your graduate degree. It is important to stay marketable. While a this degree is not a necessity for many entry level positions, in certain industries it is a must to obtain higher level positions with more authority. Going back to school can ensure you keep your training and skills up to date with current trends.

Another benefit is compensation. Those with these degrees typically earn more than those with a bachelor’s degree. On average, those with a master’s degree earn $62,000, and those with a doctorate earn $89,500. This varies by industry and position, however.

Whether you are just completing your undergraduate degree or have been in the workplace for many years, getting a graduate degree can help you advance your current career or begin a new one. With a little motivation and ambition, remember you can attain this level of degree in as little as two years and have a larger impact on your future earnings.…

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Take Advantage of the Continuing Education Workshops

Take Advantage of the Continuing Education Workshops

Change is something the world will continue to experience for eternity. On the same note, it is important to understand that change does not happen selectively. It is across the board. As the world progresses, so do all the industries because of technological advancement. Some ways of doing things are being faced out as other change oriented techniques are adopted. For instance, news skills are imparted in the education institutions daily. For this reason, the syllabus is changing with introduction of new courses.

This does not mean that those who went through the previous system are half baked. What these individuals need is refresher training in order to acquire new skills. Therefore, it is important for adults to undertake the continuing education workshops. This entails training sessions for people who hold college or university training. On the same note, this form of training has already been adopted by some professions. Examples of these include nursing, law and teaching. The professionals in these fields enroll in the courses to refresh their skills in their line of specialization. It also helps them beat the competition especially for those who are in private practice. Additionally, since this change is inevitable, it is not strange to find organizations that are enlisting their staff.

The characteristics of these classes are different. Some may be in form of seminars, study online programs or even conferences. The duration of the workshops also differs. It can be a one day affair, weeks or months. When a person wants to enroll in the continuing education workshops, it is important to look for one that fits the profession the individual is in. The person needs to register, meet the requirements and the fee. These three factors depend with the course, the duration, the certification to receive once the workshop is over and the location of the continuing education workshop.

Their listings can be found online, in the universities, colleges or as advertisements on the newspapers. An individual needs to choose one that fits the objective. This should not be undertaken to get a certificate only, it should be with the aim of acquiring the skills.

Some of the features to look for include:

1. The location of the workshop- Is it too far such that you have to make accommodation arrangement? In some cases, when the classes or seminars are held in within the institution, accommodation is provided.

2. The length – You need to understand this because it can affect your schedule especially if your employer cannot grant you a study leave.

3. The certification – If you are doing this just to acquire skills for your own benefit, the certificate you will receive may not have a great impact. If you expect it to have an impact in your workplace and your C.V, make sure it is from a registered body or organization.

4. The fee – Consider the charges included in the fee structure. Are there additional fees you are supposed to pay in order to sit for the exam or get your certificate? The amount should also be within your ability.

Above all, make sure you meet the registration requirements and you submit your application in time. These continuing education workshops will give you a new lease of skills in your career.…

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Online CPA CPE Courses – Best Options For Low Cost CPE Credits

Online CPA CPE Courses – Best Options For Low Cost CPE Credits

If you need CPA CPE credits, you have many options. CPA continuing education programs can be found in several different formats, including the increasingly popular online format. Online self-study courses are gaining popularity because they provide CPAs with the flexibility to complete their courses at their own pace and on their own schedule. There are many different online providers for online CPE training, but in order to get the best training possible you must invest the time to compare the course material and policies of the many different online CPE providers.

Finding the best CPA continuing education programs requires determining which CPE courses are approved by your state board, which format works best for your schedule, and also which courses are the most interesting to you.

Traditional courses usually offer fewer options and you will be much more limited on the variety of topics available. However, if you choose to take CPE courses online, you will find more variety in the available topics, including accounting and tax CPE courses.

There are many different benefits to online CPE, including the opportunity to get the required CPE hours in the most cost effective manner. Online CPE is almost always less expensive, due to lower overhead costs for online providers. While some CPA’s pay $50 or more per credit hour for a classroom or seminar course, online CPE can be found for as little as $1 per credit hour. Unlimited CPE programs frequently represent the best value in online CPE.

Another benefit to online CPA CPE programs is the flexibility to learn on your own schedule, and at your own pace.

In evaluating the many options, you should consider that online providers that offer CPA continuing education courses should clearly communicate course options and the services that they provide. Courses should have a clearly defined purpose, course outline, CPE hours earned, and a certificate or completion. If all of these are available online, it is the ultimate in convenience! A good CPE provider will also clearly indicate which states will accept their CPE.…