Tax preparers prepare tax returns, and help individuals and small business put their documents in order to make filing taxes as accurate and efficient as possible. Preparers begin by interviewing clients about their taxable income, deductible expenses, and any allowances they may be eligible for. Their goal is to minimize their client’s tax bill, while ensuring all tax laws are obeyed. Preparers use the information from their interviews and client records to complete all necessary tax forms, compute taxes owed or returns due to be refunded, and then give clients instructions for filing their taxes correctly. Often, tax preparers file forms electronically on behalf of their clients. For clients with unusual returns or complicated business affairs, preparers may consult tax law handbooks and bulletins to determine the correct procedure, and explain applicable laws to clients.
They also help clients with future tax planning. Tax preparers typically work in offices where they meet with clients. Work schedules often exceed 40 hours a week and are busier as the mid-April tax deadline approaches. Tax preparers are trained on the job and typically need a high school diploma. Some positions may also require an associate’s or bachelor’s degree..