Becoming a professional tax preparer, one must be ready and well prepared to meet educational requirements in order to achieve a certification in a variety of tax preparation and accounting certificates. Once certified, the next responsible step to take is to find work that best suits your skills and the needs of consumers.
By taking these steps to become a professional tax preparer, you will open doors to supplement your current income or achieve a full time position in where you can offer rewarding and well-paying work.
The First Step: Get Educated!
In order to become a tax preparer, like I said above, involves making sure you have meet the minimum requirement of education. This minimum requirement to achieve in order to become a professional tax preparer is to have a high-school diploma or equivalent. You don’t need a bachelor’s degree or an associate’s degree in order to become a professional tax preparer.
Even though you don’t need to advance your education in college to achieve a certification as a tax preparer, you should be well aware that any tax preparer job does command a variety of basic skills, such as:
- A basic understanding of tax regulations
- Adequate math skills
- Basic computer skills and typing ability
- Customer service skills and sales experience
Training options will give you the necessary edge to become a better tax preparer as well. There are many training courses that students can take learn the topics of a professional tax preparer. Topics include:
- Filing status
- Taxpayer interviews
- Tax calculations
- Refund schedules
Some tax preparation companies offer to teach new employees these professional tax preparer skills you would furthermore learn at a training course for tax preparation. This avenue of education can open many doors for you, in terms of finding employment, and saving time and money on learning new skills too.
You can also signup for training courses at the Accreditation Council for Accountancy and Taxation (ACAT) or the National Association of Tax Professionals.
You can also attend a community college or a technical school to obtain the knowledge and apply for their professional tax preparation certificate programs to help jump start your career and qualify you for entry-level positions.
If you can take advance courses in taxation, such as courses in capital gains, estate taxes and retirement funds, it will help boost your credibility as a professional tax preparer. A qualified tax preparer with the proper certifications can help you separate from the crowd in the tax preparer industry.
Advance your Professional Tax Preparer Certification
Don’t shy from wanting to achieve a higher education in tax preparation. You can reach higher feats by becoming a tax accountant, a CPA, or a Tax Attorney. This will obviously require you to gain more of an education which could increase in your expenses. But the opportunity for advancement and salary growth are much more profitable.
Without additional education in the tax preparation industry, there becomes little room for growth or advancements in your field, unless you own your own tax preparation business.