National Application Center :: career details :: Tax Preparers
Career Details :: Tax Preparers
Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses but do not have the background or responsibilities of an accredited or certified public accountant.
Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience may be helpful in these occupations, but usually is not needed. For example, a drywall installer might benefit from experience installing drywall, but an inexperienced person could still learn to be an installer with little difficulty.
These occupations usually require a high school diploma and may require some vocational training or job-related course work. In some cases, an associate's or bachelor's degree could be needed.
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees.
- Reviews financial records, such as income statements and documentation of expenditures, to determine forms needed to prepare return.
- Consults tax law handbook or bulletins to determine procedure for preparation of atypical returns.
- Verifies totals on forms prepared by others to detect errors in arithmetic or procedure, as needed.
- Calculates form preparation fee according to complexity of return and amount of time required to prepare forms.
- Interviews client to obtain additional information on taxable income and deductible expenses and allowances.
- Computes taxes owed, using adding machine or personal computer, and completes entries on forms, following tax form instructions and tax tables.
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General Work Activities
- Getting Information Needed to Do the Job
- Processing Information
- Performing Administrative Activities
- Documenting/Recording Information
- Evaluating Information Against Standards
Frequent Work Context
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate
- Importance of Being Sure All Is Done
- Consequence of Error
- Provide a Service to Others