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Tax Preparer

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What Does it Take to Be a Tax Preparer?

Job Description: Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses.

What Do Tax Preparers Do On a Daily Basis?

  • Use all appropriate adjustments, deductions, and credits to keep clients' taxes to a minimum.
  • Review financial records such as income statements and documentation of expenditures to determine forms needed to prepare tax returns.
  • Compute taxes owed or overpaid, using adding machines or personal computers, and complete entries on forms, following tax form instructions and tax tables.
  • Calculate form preparation fees according to return complexity and processing time required.
  • Furnish taxpayers with sufficient information and advice to ensure correct tax form completion.
  • Explain federal and state tax laws to individuals and companies.

Tax Preparer Skills

When polled, Tax Preparers say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Mathematics: Using mathematics to solve problems.

  • Licensed Tax Consultant
  • Tax Specialist
  • Tax Evaluator
  • Master Tax Advisor
  • Certified Income Tax Preparer (CTP)

Is There Job Demand for Tax Preparers?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 95,900 jobs in the United States for Tax Preparer. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 10.7% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 10,300 new jobs for Tax Preparer by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 11,500 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Tax Preparer are Tennessee, Utah, and Nevada. Watch out if you plan on working in Maine, Missouri, or Wyoming. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Do Tax Preparers Make A Lot Of Money?

The average yearly salary of a Tax Preparer ranges between $20,550 and $81,720.

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Tax Preparers who work in New York, Massachusetts, or Colorado, make the highest salaries.

How much do Tax Preparers make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $38,520
Alaska $55,760
Arizona $39,270
Arkansas $36,240
California $57,040
Colorado $57,650
Connecticut $50,810
District of Columbia $97,070
Florida $39,020
Georgia $39,950
Hawaii $55,990
Idaho $33,220
Illinois $30,200
Indiana $40,780
Iowa $42,930
Kansas $37,320
Kentucky $37,920
Louisiana $39,590
Maine $38,270
Maryland $52,530
Massachusetts $65,670
Minnesota $50,440
Mississippi $28,770
Missouri $40,480
Montana $40,170
Nebraska $37,530
Nevada $49,030
New Hampshire $49,090
New Jersey $51,840
New Mexico $42,040
New York $63,440
North Carolina $45,460
North Dakota $53,920
Ohio $47,010
Oklahoma $42,820
Oregon $56,960
Pennsylvania $38,910
Rhode Island $41,770
South Carolina $41,000
South Dakota $42,650
Tennessee $46,670
Texas $49,750
Utah $46,470
Vermont $46,830
Virginia $34,090
Washington $38,130
West Virginia $30,910
Wisconsin $45,840
Wyoming $29,160

Tools & Technologies Used by Tax Preparers

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Tax Preparers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Microsoft Access
  • Email software
  • Intuit QuickBooks
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Sage 50 Accounting
  • Tax software
  • Intuit Quicken
  • ATX Total Accounting Office
  • Web page creation and editing software
  • Laserfiche Avante
  • Universal Tax Systems TaxWise
  • Intuit ProSeries
  • CCH ProSystem fx TAX
  • ATX Total Tax Office
  • Sync Essentials Trade Accountant

How to Become a Tax Preparer

What kind of Tax Preparer requirements are there?

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where do Tax Preparers Work?

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Tax Preparers work in the following industries:

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Those who work as a Tax Preparer sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:

References:

Image Credit: Pixabay via CC0 License

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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