Tax preparers are legally authorized to prepare and even defend the tax documents of their clients who might be companies or individuals. The IRS or Internal Revenue Service issues a unique PTIN or Preparer Tax Identification Number for these professionals. However, there are various other credentials apart from the PTIN offering tax preparers additional rights of representation. The individuals who are looking to make a career in serving as tax preparation officers should have a very clear understanding of the tax preparation requirements that can help them in achieving the career of their interest. Tax preparation certification is important for these professionals to serve as tax preparers. Major tax preparation certifications include:
Certified Public Accountants
Certified Public Accountants or CPAs are licensed by the US territories or states and they must pass the Uniform CPA Examination. In the US, each territory or state established certain additional tax preparation requirements such as review of certification requirements and education. Many CPAs generally specialize in the preparation of tax returns and tax planning.
Enrolled agents in the US are registered tax return preparers. They are required to pass a certain suitability check and take a test covering business and individual taxes along with representations issues. They also need to undergo seventy-two hours of additional education once during three years. Enrolled agents possess the most extensive licensing offered by the IRS and this license is valid throughout the US.
It is mandatory for tax attorneys to be licensed by a state bar or state court post earning a degree in law and passing the bar examination. Attorneys work in the form of registered tax return preparers and they also have the capability of preparing legal defense for their clients involved in tax-related court cases. This goes even for the taxes that were not prepared by them. Once certified, the tax preparers generally invest in certain cloud-based software programs that help in providing their clients with quicker services and improved accuracy.
Tax Preparer Certification Requirements
Tax preparers can easily seek voluntary certification with the IRS. They generally require a high school diploma and even receive on-the-job training. Nevertheless, there are two and four year postsecondary schools offering tax preparation courses for tax preparation enthusiasts. Tax preparers can look for voluntary certification through IRS but they are not allowed to use the term “certified” in their title. The professionals meeting IRS requirements do receive a Record of Completion and they are included in the directory of the IRS website starting in January 2015.
Tax preparers usually meet their clients for determining the adjustments, deductions and credits which can be applied to taxable income. In order to carry out this job responsibility, the tax preparers review the financial records of their clients and even consult the current tax codes. There are some tax preparation experts who work seasonally whole there are others working in the form of full-time professionals.