Tax season can be a stressful time for many people, and it can be difficult to know where to turn for help. Working with a paid tax coach can be a great way to save time and gain peace of mind. Not only that, but you may even save money if your tax preparer is able to identify deductions and credits that you weren't aware of. To learn more about your options, read on for an overview of the different types of tax return preparers. When you hire a tax preparer, you expect them to be knowledgeable in tax preparation and to file your return accurately.
After all, they have access to some of your most personal information, such as your marriage status, income, children, and social security numbers.
What is a Tax Preparer?A tax preparer is someone who prepares, calculates, and files income tax returns on behalf of individuals and businesses. There are several different types of tax preparers, some of which have credentials issued by third-party organizations, while others are not accredited. Knowing the different types of tax preparers and credentials can help you get the best possible outcome when filing your taxes.
Types of Tax PreparersAnyone can prepare a paid tax return as long as they have an IRS Tax Preparer Identification Number (PTIN).
However, some tax preparers have credentials issued by outside organizations. For example, certified public accountants (CPAs), enrolled agents (EAs), attorneys, and other professionals may have credentials from their respective organizations. In addition to these credentialed professionals, there are also unaccredited tax preparers who may be self-taught or have received training from a tax preparation store where they work seasonally. These individuals may also be employed or volunteer at companies or organizations that provide free tax preparation services. While they are not required to carry credentials in most cases, they are authorized to represent their clients before the IRS in all tax matters.
Avoiding Unscrupulous Tax PreparersThe IRS provides tips to help taxpayers avoid unscrupulous tax preparers.
They are also committed to investigating paid tax return preparers who act improperly. If you believe that you have been financially affected by a tax return preparer's misconduct or improper tax preparation practices, you can file a complaint with the IRS.