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Whether you are an accountant or bookkeeper looking to potentially expand your business, or you are simply looking for a new career path, the enrolled agent designation may be right for you. There are a number of benefits to becoming an enrolled agent. Here are a few.
We all need to eat and provide shelter for ourselves and our families. Money may not be everything, but it certainly pays the bills. Tax work can provide secure employment for the rest of your life. Most everyone is familiar with Benjamin Franklin’s quote “nothing is certain but death and taxes.” Because income taxes aren’t going away anytime soon, the role of an enrolled agent will always be in demand. There is a growing need for enrolled agents to assist taxpayers with their tax preparation and planning. Most taxpayers don’t have the time, energy, or desire to learn how to plan and prepare tax returns. For this reason, reputable and reliable tax professionals are always in high demand. Taxpayers are grateful to enrolled agents who help them find ways to reduce what they owe, maximize refunds, and manage IRS audits.
The IRS only awards one credential and that is the enrolled agent. This credential is only given to those who pass the three-part Special Enrollment Exam (also known as the Enrolled Agent Exam). Passing the exam is evidence that an enrolled agent has knowledge in tax matters that will be seen as a credible resource in the eyes of the IRS. The training an enrolled agent goes through to earn the designation is worthy of respect in the tax industry. Many businesses seek the type of knowledge and experience offered by an enrolled agent. The enrolled agent credential could give a job candidate an edge when applying for future positions, even those unrelated to tax preparation. Basic accounting and tax skills are something everyone should have, but few do, which will make enrolled agents a valuable asset to any employer.
As an enrolled agent, you have many options when it comes to your schedule. For example, you could work full-time for a firm or for yourself from home. You could take on clients just during the busiest tax season, or maintain business contracts year-round. You have the option to decide how many clients you want to serve. You could also work part-time to supplement income from another profession. Tax preparers often enjoy the ability to manage their own schedules. Whether you prefer working days, evenings, or weekends, you can set appointments with clients on a schedule that works for you, allowing you to balance work and life.
Careers are not only about earning money. Gaining a sense of satisfaction from the work is a bonus beyond a salary. Working as an enrolled agent can be challenging, but it is also rewarding. You will gain a sense of personal fulfillment being an enrolled agent by seeing the joy on a client’s face when you save them money on their tax returns. And it’s not just money an enrolled agent can save. Many times, an enrolled agent can save clients from serious tax problems. Enrolled agents have the expertise to navigate a complicated tax system. If you like to help people, then a career as an enrolled agent might be right for you.
“Honestly, IRS audits can be very stressful and even scary for clients and it is very rewarding to be able to help them through that process and give them peace of mind.” Courtney Epps, PhD, Enrolled Agent
If an accounting professional already has a practice, the enrolled agent designation could help expand the business. Many tax professionals do not want to simply prepare taxes for clients, they also want to represent the client with negotiations with the IRS. The enrolled agent credential allows a tax practitioner to expand their business with representation clients. With an enrolled agent designation, you can offer a wider range of services beyond tax preparation. An enrolled agent can find ways to sustain a workload throughout the year by working for businesses, keeping books, and filing quarterly estimated taxes and amended returns, for example.