What is an Enrolled Agent?

To pass, you’ll need good study habits and top-notch IRS and tax resources. Stephanie also is a published author of the book How to Pass the CPA Exam. Additionally, she created I Pass the CMA Exam, the first CMA help site. Her guidance and mentorship have helped hundreds of thousands of candidates pass their exams.

Enrolled agents report higher job satisfaction and higher than average income than tax preparers without a designation. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of tax preparers is projected to grow 4% from 2019 to 2029, which is on par with the average growth rate for all occupations. Additionally, with the new tax laws and the ever-changing tax code, the need for knowledgeable tax professionals is increasing. As an enrolled agent, you’ll become an expert in tax law and be able to assist clients in navigating complex tax situations.

What Is An Enrolled Agent?

This versatility allows you to benefit from a comprehensive approach to your wealth goals, integrating tax considerations into all aspects of your financial plan. To learn more about this specialized designation, visit the IRS website. EAs take continuing education courses each year to keep up with the changes and have research tools at their disposal to constantly monitor updates.

  • However, there are some key differences between the two that can make one a better fit for your needs than the other.
  • In the last few years, IRS examinations or audits have increased significantly.
  • She enjoys learning about their hopes and dreams and then building a customized plan to help them realize those aspirations.
  • She is also the Executive Committee member responsible for Finance at New Sight Eye Care, a charity registered in the United Kingdom and Hong Kong.
  • Managers are looking for new ideas and are prepared to provide the necessary on-the-job training to prepare new hires for success.

Most taxpayers do not have the time, desire, or the research tools necessary to keep up with the tax code each year. When you choose an enrolled agent, you know your preparer keeps up with the rules and regulations and will use this expertise to do the best job possible for you. Some former IRS employees with five years of taxation experience may apply to become an enrolled agent without taking the exam. Non-exempt persons must take and pass the Special Enrollment Examination (SEE). All enrolled agents must complete 72 hours of continuing education every 36 months. CPAs and attorneys may serve as enrolled agents without taking the exam.

The length of time required to become an enrolled agent is much less than the amount of time required to become a CPA. The hearings that an EA will often take part in usually occur via telephone. Additionally, enrolled agents must possess a thorough understanding of IRS documentation, as the documentation must be filed with the IRS. For this reason, an enrolled agent must also be well organized and capable of meeting reporting and filing deadlines.

Why Take the EA Exam as a Student

Enrolled agents can work in a variety of roles within tax preparation firms, accounting departments, and financial advisory firms, among other positions. For informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as specific investment, accounting, legal, or tax advice. Certain information is based on third party data and deemed to be reliable, but its accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed.

There are also only three parts – individuals, businesses, and representation/procedures. An enrolled agent is responsible for representing individuals to the Internal Revenue Service. Since an enrolled agent has a number of responsibilities, the salary tends to be fairly lucrative. The National Association of Enrolled Agents reports that there are more than 50,000 enrolled agents working in the United States as well as abroad. Before delving too deeply into this field as a career option, it’s important to understand EA salaries to determine if this is the right career choice for you. EA candidates with IRS experience must fill out a form, undergo a background check, and have their tax transcripts reviewed.

Certification could soon be a requirement.

If you’re unfamiliar with the role, enrolled agents are tax professionals who specialize in tax preparation and IRS representation. While it’s a lesser-known profession than that of a CPA or tax attorney, it offers plenty of opportunities for growth and advancement. An enrolled agent (EA) is a tax professional authorized by the United States government to represent taxpayers in matters regarding the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). EAs must pass an examination or have sufficient experience as an IRS employee and pass a background check. Enrolled agents first appeared in 1884 due to issues arising with Civil War loss claims. If you are interested in pursuing a career in the field of taxation, becoming an enrolled agent could be the next step in your professional journey.

How to Become an Enrolled Agent

In the last few years, IRS examinations or audits have increased significantly. This means there is a far greater need for EAs today than in the past. Given the current rising number of examinations, more citizens have found themselves in need of representation. To a large degree, the job of enrollment agents is actually recession proof. Enrolled agents ensure that citizens receive competent representation.

Why You Should Become an Enrolled Agent

Whether you decide to work with an enrolled agent or a tax attorney, make sure you choose a reputable professional with a proven track record of success. CPAs are licensed professionals who can provide a broad range of financial services, including tax preparation and planning, accounting, and auditing. The biggest step you can take to increase your salary as a tax preparer is to become an Enrolled Agent.

Just like your EA review course, I’m here to help you become an enrolled agent, and I lay out the path from start to finish. Additionally, my answers to EA exam FAQ help you keep moving forward toward the EA designation. No matter which professional you choose, both EAs and CPAs must adhere to strict ethical standards and provide high-quality service to their clients. Ultimately, the decision of whether to work with an EA or a CPA will depend on your individual needs and circumstances. Offer more flexibility and greater access to management, giving individuals a greater say in the perks and fringe benefits available. Staff accountants handle various financial duties such as ensuring financial statements are prepared correctly and that companies follow the laws and regulations for financial practices.

On the other hand, the CPA Exam has four parts and much broader content. The section equivalent to the EA exam is Regulation (REG), and only about 70% of the REG content directly relates to the EA exam. If you are considering making a career change or simply exploring career options in the accounting industry, one career choice you may be thinking about is becoming an Enrolled Agent (EA). Find a place you want to live or a firm you want to work for and then use the table below to inform your salary expectations. Find out about your state taxes—property taxes, tax rates and brackets, common forms, and much more. Is a Maryland State Registered Tax Preparer, State Certified Notary Public, Certified VITA Tax Preparer, IRS Annual Filing Season Program Participant, and Tax Writer.

At the same time, some people dislike the bureaucracy that comes with larger organizations, and they’re happier at the end of the day if they have more freedom to pursue their own ideas. Enrolled agents are required to prove their proficiency in every aspect of taxes, ethics, and representation, unlike CPAs and attorneys, who may not specialize in taxes. This additional skill involved negotiating with the IRS on behalf of their clients.

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