What Does a Tax Consultant Do?

As a tax consultant, you specialize in advising clients on a wide range of financial-related matters. You work with individuals and businesses and must be able to stay current on new tax requirements and laws at both the federal and state levels. You also counsel clients on short and long term tax optimization strategies. A strong written and verbal communication skill set is necessary to convey your understanding of complex tax law to your clients.

In general, a tax consultant is someone who has more in-depth knowledge of the tax code than a tax preparer. Tax consultants can assist individuals who have more complex financial and taxation concerns, such as those who own businesses, are beneficiaries of trusts, or have professions with complicated taxation rules (such as the clergy).

A tax consultant typically works for a financial consulting firm, a public accounting firm, or a government agency, although some may operate their own tax practice independent of a larger entity. They also can choose to work with a range of clients, from small business owners and individual taxpayers to large corporations and partnerships.

When choosing a tax consultant, consider asking for recommendations from other people and comparing their rates to those of others. Look for a person who is experienced and whose services are highly recommended. You can check a potential tax consultant’s professional designations and qualifications by calling their licensing boards or searching the IRS online directory of tax professionals.

The qualifications needed to become a tax consultant include a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, business, or a similar field and thorough knowledge of the tax code. You can complete an associate degree program in order to gain the skills necessary for this job, but most employers prefer applicants with at least a bachelor’s degree. Some colleges offer master’s degrees in taxation, which can give you a competitive edge in the hiring process.

You can also hone your skills by working as an assistant to a tax consultant or a CPA. This can give you hands-on experience preparing and filing tax returns, as well as familiarity with various financial software programs. You may want to pursue a voluntary certification, such as becoming an IRS enrolled agent, which will allow you to represent taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service for audits and collections.

Because of the intricacies involved in tax laws, this is a highly specialized field. It can be challenging to keep up with the latest changes in the tax code and taxation regulations, especially at the state level. To be successful in this career, you must have excellent organizational skills to manage your client files and ensure that you have the most up-to-date information to file their returns. You should be able to quickly locate any document that you need and explain complex tax laws to your clients in an easy-to-understand manner. You must also be proficient in Microsoft Office applications and able to communicate with your clients via email or telephone. Steuerberater

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