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Become A Tax Examiner

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Working As A Tax Examiner

  • Getting Information
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Processing Information
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $68,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Tax Examiner Do

Tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents ensure that federal, state, and local governments get their tax money from businesses and citizens. They review tax returns, conduct audits, identify taxes owed, and collect overdue tax payments.

Duties

Tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents typically do the following:

  • Review filed tax returns to determine whether credits and deductions claimed are allowed by law
  • Contact taxpayers to address problems and to request supporting documentation
  • Conduct field audits and investigations of income tax returns to verify information or to update tax liabilities
  • Evaluate financial information, using their familiarity with accounting procedures and knowledge of changes to tax laws and regulations
  • Keep records on each case they deal with, including contacts, telephone numbers, and actions taken
  • Notify taxpayers of any overpayment or underpayment and either issue a refund or request additional payment

Tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents are responsible for ensuring that individuals and businesses pay the taxes they owe. In addition to verifying that tax returns are filed properly, they follow up with taxpayers whose returns are questionable or who owe more money.

Different levels of government collect different types of taxes. The federal government deals primarily with personal and business income taxes. State governments collect income and sales taxes. Local governments collect sales and property taxes.

Because many states assess individual income taxes based on the taxpayer’s reported federal income, tax examiners working for the federal government report to the states any adjustments or corrections they make. State tax examiners then determine whether the adjustments affect how much the taxpayer owes the state.

Tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents have different duties and responsibilities:

Tax examiners usually deal with the simplest tax returns—those filed by individual taxpayers who claim few deductions and those filed by small businesses. At the entry level, many tax examiners do clerical tasks, such as reviewing tax returns and entering them into a computer system for processing. Tax examiners also may contact individual taxpayers in order to resolve any outstanding problems with their returns.

Much of a tax examiner’s job involves making sure that tax credits and deductions claimed by taxpayers are lawful. If a taxpayer owes additional taxes, tax examiners adjust the total amount by assessing fees, interest, and penalties and then notify the taxpayer of the total amount owed.

Revenue agents specialize in tax-related accounting for the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and for equivalent agencies in state and local governments. Like tax examiners, they review returns for accuracy. However, revenue agents handle complicated tax returns of large businesses and corporations.

Many experienced revenue agents specialize in a particular area. For example, they may focus exclusively on multinational businesses. Regardless of their specialty, revenue agents must keep up to date with changes in the lengthy and complex tax laws and regulations.

Collectors, also called revenue officers in the IRS, deal with overdue accounts. The process of collecting an overdue payment starts with the revenue agent or tax examiner sending a report to the taxpayer. If the taxpayer makes no effort to pay, the case is assigned to a collector.

When a collector takes a case, he or she first sends a notice to the taxpayer. The collector then works with the taxpayer to settle the debt. Settlement may involve setting up a plan in which the amount owed is paid back in small amounts over time.

When delinquent taxpayers claim that they cannot pay their taxes, collectors investigate and verify these claims. Collectors research information on taxpayer mortgages or financial statements and locate taxpayer-owned items of value through third parties, such as neighbors or local departments of motor vehicles. Ultimately, collectors must decide whether the IRS should take a lien—a claim on an asset such as a bank account, real estate, or an automobile—to settle a debt. Collectors also have the authority to garnish wages—that is, take a portion of earned wages—to collect taxes owed.

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How To Become A Tax Examiner

Most tax examiners and collectors, and revenue agents need a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. However, the required level of education and experience varies by position and employer.

Education

Tax examiners need a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field, or a combination of relevant education and specialized experience in accounting, auditing, or tax compliance work. Candidates for tax examiner positions at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) must have a bachelor’s degree or 1 year of full-time specialized experience.

Revenue agents need a bachelor’s degree in accounting, business administration, economics, or a related discipline. A combination of relevant education and full-time experience in business administration, accounting, or auditing is also qualifying. Revenue agents with the IRS must have either a bachelor’s degree or 30 semester hours of accounting coursework, along with specialized experience. Specialized experience includes work in accounting, bookkeeping, or tax analysis.

Collectors usually must have some combination of relevant college education and specialized experience. Specialized experience may include previous work as a loan officer or credit manager, or a background in collections, management, customer service, or tax compliance. A bachelor’s degree is needed for employment as a collector with the IRS; no additional experience is required, and experience may not be substituted for the degree. Employers desire degrees in business, finance, accounting, and criminal justice.

At the state and local levels, a bachelor’s degree is not always required, although related work experience is desired.

Training

Newly hired tax examiners get some formal training, which typically lasts between 1 month and 1 year. All tax examiners must keep current with changes in the tax code and enforcement procedures.

Entry-level collectors get both formal training and on-the-job training under an instructor’s guidance before working independently. Collectors also are encouraged to continue their professional education by attending meetings to exchange information about how modifications to tax laws affect collection methods.

Other Experience

Some state and local governments accept work experience as a substitute for education. In these cases, employers may hire tax examiners and revenue agents who have work experience in accounting, bookkeeping, or tax analysis. Employers may also hire collectors who have work experience in related areas, such as collections, customer service, or credit checking.

Advancement

Tax examiners, revenue agents, and collectors have different opportunities for career advancement. Tax examiners who review individual tax returns may advance to revenue agent positions, working on more complex business returns. Those with experience in supervisory or managerial roles may move to jobs that involve supervision of other examiners and revenue agents. Collectors who demonstrate leadership skills and a thorough knowledge of tax collection activities may advance to supervisory or managerial collector positions.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Tax examiners and revenue agents must be able to identify questionable claims for credits and deductions. Ultimately, they must be able to determine, on further review of financial documentation, if the credits or deductions are lawful.

Computer skills. Tax examiners and revenue agents must be comfortable using a variety of computer programs. These programs include tax preparation and bookkeeping software used by individuals and businesses.

Detail oriented. Tax examiners and revenue agents verify the accuracy of each entry on the tax returns they review. Therefore, it is important that they pay attention to detail.

Interpersonal skills. Collectors must be comfortable dealing with people, including speaking with them during confrontational situations. When pursuing overdue accounts, collectors should be firm and composed.

Organizational skills. Tax examiners and revenue agents often work with multiple returns and a variety of financial documents. Keeping the various pieces of information organized is essential.

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Tax Examiner Jobs

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Tax Examiner Career Paths

Tax Examiner
Accountant Senior Accountant
Accounting Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Accountant Senior Accountant Accounting Manager
Assistant Controller
6 Yearsyrs
Accountant Senior Accountant Controller
Corporate Controller
12 Yearsyrs
Staff Accountant Charge Bookkeeper Office Manager
Administrative Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Staff Accountant Consultant Office Manager
Accountant And Office Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Staff Accountant Finance Analyst Controller
Accounting Director
11 Yearsyrs
Tax Preparer Team Leader Office Manager
Accounts Receivable Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Tax Preparer Team Leader Supervisor
Unit Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Tax Preparer Specialist Benefit Specialist
Benefits Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Auditor Senior Auditor
Audit Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Auditor Specialist Compliance Specialist
Compliance Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Auditor Certified Public Accountant Tax Accountant
Tax Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Legal Assistant Executive Assistant Assistant Property Manager
Assistant Community Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Legal Assistant Consultant Accounting Manager
Comptroller
6 Yearsyrs
Legal Assistant Team Leader Customer Service Manager
Collections Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Specialist Compliance Specialist Compliance Manager
Compliance Director
12 Yearsyrs
Finance Analyst Accounts Payable Supervisor
Accounts Payable Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Finance Analyst Accounting Manager Tax Manager
Senior Tax Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Analyst Underwriter Assistant Branch Manager
Branch Operations Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Certified Nursing Assistant Billing Specialist Charge Bookkeeper
Account Human Resources Manager
6 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Tax Examiner?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Do you work as a Tax Examiner?

Average Yearly Salary
$68,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$33,000
Min 10%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Median 50%
$141,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
PricewaterhouseCoopers
Highest Paying City
Denver, CO
Highest Paying State
North Dakota
Avg Experience Level
3.8 years
How much does a Tax Examiner make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Tax Examiner in the United States is $68,911 per year or $33 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $33,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $141,000.

How Would You Rate The Salary Of a Tax Examiner?

Have you worked as a Tax Examiner? Help other job seekers by rating your experience as a Tax Examiner.

Top Skills for A Tax Examiner

  1. Income Tax Returns
  2. IRS
  3. Customer Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Bestowed quality correction procedures to income tax returns according to the prescribed guidelines and authorities.
  • Served as liaison to professional organizations and other stakeholder groups with an interest in IRS enforcement policies and compliance initiatives.
  • Provide customer service assistance to taxpayers and/or representatives with preparation of filing Federal tax returns.
  • Analyze and determine taxpayer's financial condition by investigating financial statements.
  • General duties Data Entry Processing applications Assigned Tax identification number an amended tax returns

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Top 10 Best States for Tax Examiners

  1. Alaska
  2. Connecticut
  3. Illinois
  4. Iowa
  5. Michigan
  6. Massachusetts
  7. New York
  8. New Jersey
  9. Minnesota
  10. Arizona
  • (3 jobs)
  • (20 jobs)
  • (67 jobs)
  • (27 jobs)
  • (29 jobs)
  • (50 jobs)
  • (97 jobs)
  • (33 jobs)
  • (38 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)

Tax Examiner Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 3,257 Tax Examiner resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Tax Examiner Resume

View Resume Examples

Tax Examiner Demographics

Gender

Female

58.7%

Male

30.3%

Unknown

11.0%
Ethnicity

White

60.5%

Hispanic or Latino

16.9%

Black or African American

12.2%

Asian

6.9%

Unknown

3.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

68.7%

Chinese

6.0%

Mandarin

4.5%

Portuguese

3.0%

German

3.0%

Japanese

3.0%

French

3.0%

Italian

3.0%

Greek

1.5%

Carrier

1.5%

Korean

1.5%

Malayalam

1.5%
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Tax Examiner Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

18.3%

Fresno City College

7.5%

Strayer University

7.0%

Texas State University

6.1%

Weber State University

5.9%

University of Texas at Austin

5.7%

Austin Community College

5.3%

Temple University

5.0%

Georgia State University

4.8%

University of Memphis

4.4%

Community College of Philadelphia

4.0%

Ashford University

4.0%

California State University - Fresno

4.0%

University of Cincinnati

2.9%

Kaplan University

2.9%

University of Missouri - Kansas City

2.8%

Walden University

2.4%

Suffolk County Community College

2.4%

Johnson County Community College

2.4%

University of Central Missouri

2.2%
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Majors

Business

31.5%

Accounting

22.5%

Finance

4.4%

Criminal Justice

4.2%

Health Care Administration

4.1%

Management

3.9%

Education

3.2%

Medical Assisting Services

3.1%

Legal Support Services

2.5%

Computer Science

2.2%

Psychology

2.2%

Human Resources Management

2.2%

Liberal Arts

2.0%

Communication

1.8%

Law

1.8%

General Studies

1.7%

Economics

1.7%

Computer Information Systems

1.7%

English

1.6%

Nursing

1.6%
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Degrees

Bachelors

36.0%

Other

23.6%

Masters

18.2%

Associate

11.3%

Certificate

6.3%

Diploma

2.3%

Doctorate

1.8%

License

0.3%
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Tax Examiner Videos

Tax Examiners Collectors and Revenue Agents

Dating BIR examiner, inaakusahan si Henares ng hindi pag-aksyon sa 1 tax case ng isang kumpanya

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