If you are clueless about filing your income tax returns, you need the services of a tax preparer. And let's face it: most of us fall into this category. The U.S. tax code proves to be so confusing that over 80% of taxpayers give up on managing alone, including the head of the IRS.

As a tax preparer, you need to know your way around taxing legislation and regulations because if you do not, it will come back and bite you, you know where, fairly soon. This is not the kind of thing you would want to be bluffing with.

And even if your work is spotless, your client might still forget to sign the documents before submitting them, which is what happens to over a million taxpayers, nationwide, every year. So if you decide to be a tax preparer, rest assured, people who master this profession will never have to look hard for clients.

What Does a Tax Preparer Do

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a tax preparer, we found that a lot of resumes listed 25.1% of tax preparers included customer service, while 16.4% of resumes included new clients, and 14.3% of resumes included tax returns. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

Learn more about what a Tax Preparer does

How To Become a Tax Preparer

If you're interested in becoming a tax preparer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 46.2% of tax preparers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 8.4% of tax preparers have master's degrees. Even though most tax preparers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Tax Preparer

Tax Preparer Career Paths

Average Salary for a Tax Preparer

Tax Preparers in America make an average salary of $51,020 per year or $25 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $85,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $30,000 per year.
Average Tax Preparer Salary
$51,020 Yearly
$24.53 hourly
$30,000
10 %
$51,000
Median
$85,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Tax Preparer Education

Tax Preparer Majors

26.7 %
4.3 %

Tax Preparer Degrees

Bachelors

46.2 %

Associate

24.3 %

High School Diploma

11.9 %

Top Colleges for Tax Preparers

1. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

2. Villanova University

Villanova, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,308
Enrollment
6,819

3. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

4. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,760
Enrollment
31,451

5. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Champaign, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,094
Enrollment
32,974

6. SUNY at Albany

Albany, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,011
Enrollment
13,434

7. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

8. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

9. Baylor University

Waco, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$45,542
Enrollment
14,159

10. California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,816
Enrollment
21,047

Top Skills For a Tax Preparer

  • Customer Service, 25.1%
  • New Clients, 16.4%
  • Tax Returns, 14.3%
  • Financial Records, 12.7%
  • Sufficient Information, 6.6%
  • Other Skills, 24.9%

Choose From 10+ Customizable Tax Preparer Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Tax Preparer templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Tax Preparer resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Tax Preparer Resume
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Tax Preparer Demographics

Tax Preparer Gender Distribution

Female
Female
72%
Male
Male
28%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among tax preparers, 71.8% of them are women, while 28.2% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among tax preparers is White, which makes up 58.9% of all tax preparers.

  • The most common foreign language among tax preparers is Spanish at 51.6%.

Online Courses For Tax Preparer That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Tax Preparation and Law 2021, 2020, 2019 & 2018 - Income Tax
udemy
4.5
(2,115)

Income tax preparation Form 1040 and supporting schedules taught by a Certified Public Accountant (CPA)...

Financial Accounting-Adjusting Entries & Financial Statement
udemy
4.4
(368)

Adjusting entry creation, posting adjusting entries to a worksheet, creating financial statements from the trial balance...

Fundamentals of Business Taxes
udemy
4.4
(683)

Learn the fundamentals of business taxes and understand the basics of doing taxes for your business...

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Best States For a Tax Preparer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a tax preparer. The best states for people in this position are Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Delaware, and Nevada. Tax preparers make the most in Rhode Island with an average salary of $76,825. Whereas in New Hampshire and Delaware, they would average $74,965 and $72,606, respectively. While tax preparers would only make an average of $72,479 in Nevada, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Rhode Island

Total Tax Preparer Jobs:
91
Highest 10% Earn:
$139,000
Location Quotient:
1.21 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Nevada

Total Tax Preparer Jobs:
145
Highest 10% Earn:
$125,000
Location Quotient:
1.12 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Delaware

Total Tax Preparer Jobs:
89
Highest 10% Earn:
$132,000
Location Quotient:
1.14 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Tax Preparers

How Do Tax Preparer Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

3.0

Review of tax preparer position February 2020

3.0

Zippia Official LogoReview of tax preparer position February 2020

What do you like the most about working as Tax Preparer?

Seasonal work and flexible schedule Show More

What do you NOT like?

Low pay, considering the knowledge required to do the work and the volume of work that has to be done in a limited amount of time. Show More

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Top Tax Preparer Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ tax preparers and discovered their number of tax preparer opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Jackson Hewitt Tax Service was the best, especially with an average salary of $51,728. H&R; Block follows up with an average salary of $48,900, and then comes Liberty Tax Service with an average of $51,734. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a tax preparer. The employers include Intuit, Robert Half, and Wealth Enhancement Group

Most Common Employers For Tax Preparer

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1AARP$87,764$42.19117
2Datamatics$70,572$33.9326
3Amscot$67,211$32.31125
4PLS$58,906$28.3222
5Community Tax$57,338$27.5761
6Walmart$54,509$26.2133
7Prepare International$53,070$25.5121
8Liberty Tax$51,734$24.877,287
9Jackson Hewitt$51,728$24.879,297
10Toro Taxes$51,710$24.8622

Tax Preparer Videos

Becoming a Tax Preparer FAQs

How long does it take to become a Tax Preparer?

It takes 5 years of professional experience to become a tax preparer. That is the time it takes to learn specific tax preparer skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 8 to 10 years years to become a tax preparer.

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