What is an Enrolled Agent (EA)?

What is an Enrolled Agent (EA)?

What does an enrolled agent do?

An enrolled agent is a tax professional with authorization from the federal government to represent taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at all levels. Enrolled agents have unlimited practice rights.

Is an EA better than a CPA?

An EA is the highest credential the IRS awards. A professional with this designation typically makes between $15,000 and $20,000 more than CPAs annually. You’ll want to seek out an EA for any and all tax-related issues. In fact, the IRS says they are uncontested experts on such topics.

What is an EA degree?

The Enrolled Agent credential is a nationally recognized certification offered by the IRS for tax professionals. You can become an EA by obtaining a Personal Tax Identification Number (PTIN), passing all three parts of the IRS’s Special Enrollment Examination (SEE), and passing compliance and background checks.

What does EA mean after a name?

If you’re exploring hiring a professional to do your taxes, you may come across the terms enrolled agent (EA) or certified public accountant (CPA).

Can an EA do audits?

Although enrolled agents perform accounting tasks and certain kinds of audits, they’re limited in that they can’t express an “unqualified” type of opinion. For example, they can’t advise a public company when it’s filing financial statements with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

What is the difference between an enrolled agent and a CPA?

EAs and CPAs are both knowledgeable, experienced professionals who are required to maintain high ethical standards. The primary difference between an EA vs CPA is that EAs specialize in taxation, and CPAs can specialize in taxation and more.

Is being an enrolled agent worth it?

As an EA, they earn the right and privilege to represent clients before the IRS, covering all tax topics and working with any administrative level. It is a highly respected accounting certification that has the power to boost careers and expand opportunities within the profession.

Are enrolled agents in demand?

Although it may seem like CPAs are more profitable, the increase in demand for enrolled agents means salaries are expected to grow. In as little as four years, EAs can earn the same amount as the average CPA if they are successful in gaining clients.

How do I become EA certified?

The IRS lists three steps to becoming an enrolled agent:
  1. Obtain a PTIN through the IRS.
  2. Schedule and pass the EA licensing exam. Candidates can then apply for enrollment through the IRS website.
  3. Undergo a background check. Background checks look at income tax history and any criminal background.

How hard is it to become an enrolled agent?

The most difficult test for most candidates is Part 2 (Businesses). Only about 60% of exam takers have passed this part in the past three years. Part 1 of the exam (Individuals) is also challenging; approximately 75-80% of exam-takers have passed this part of the exam in the past three years.

How do I prepare for the enrolled agent exam?

Enrolled Agent Exam Prep Tips
  1. Know the Steps to Become an Enrolled Agent. …
  2. Get Familiar With the Enrolled Agent Exam. …
  3. Find an EA Review Course. …
  4. Schedule Your Exam Early. …
  5. Start Studying Early. …
  6. Create a Study Plan and Stick to It. …
  7. Budget in Non-Study Activities. …
  8. Do Practice Exams and Learn How to Budget Your Time.

How do I find my EA?

Follow these steps to become an EA:
  1. Obtain a Preparer Tax Identification Number;
  2. Apply to take the Special Enrollment Examination (SEE);
  3. Achieve passing scores on all 3 parts of the SEE;*
  4. Apply for enrollment; and.

Why should I hire an enrolled agent?

Enrolled agents are pure tax specialists who can help you with tax planning, prepare your tax return for you, and represent you in Tax Court if you ever run into any problems with the IRS. If you have a tax issue that doesn’t require the input of a CPA or an attorney, hiring an enrolled agent is the way to go.

Does IRS hire enrolled agents?

Can an enrolled agent file taxes?

An enrolled agent can provide tax consultations, file federal and state returns, and represent taxpayers to the IRS in an audit.

What is the difference between a CPA and a tax preparer?

A CPA has to obtain a proper degree, pass a complicated exam, obtain professional experience, and face regulation by a state board. Without completing the proper degree, tax preparers will not have the basic accounting skills required to prepare business tax returns.

How much do tax preparers make?

Median Salary

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports the average salary of a tax preparer as $46,860, however this number can increase if you earn an additional degree and gain experience. In addition, firms in cities with a higher cost of living tend to pay tax preparers more.

How profitable is a tax preparation business?

Starting a tax preparation business can be very lucrative and is a great way to earn additional income while only working part time hours. Many tax preparers make between $30,000-$100,000 in 90 days or less and many do it while working from home or being mobile.

How long does it take to become an IRS enrolled agent?

How long does it take to become an enrolled agent? Generally, it takes about a month to prepare for each part of the enrolled agent exam (between 3-4 months total). Of course, the length of your journey to become an enrolled agent depends on your prior tax experience.

How many enrolled agents are in the US?

According to the National Association of Enrolled Agents, there are approximately 53,000 practicing EAs in the United States.

How much does an enrolled agent make in California?

The average salary for a enrolled agent is $66,539 per year in California.

Do Enrolled Agents work all year?

An enrolled agent usually works on a year-round basis helping clients. As part of an EA’s job responsibilities, he or she often develops a strategy for handling matters with the IRS.

How much is the EA exam?

What is an enrolled agent exam?

The IRS Enrolled Agent exam, or the Special Enrollment Examination (SEE), is a three-part exam that individuals must pass to become Enrolled Agents (EAs). Upon passing the EA exam and earning the EA credential, Enrolled Agents are granted unlimited practice rights to represent any taxpayer before the IRS.

Is EA exam easy?

Therefore, the EA exam is not extremely difficult. Rather, it is just different than the CPA Exam. If you think of tax law as a lot of rules, exceptions to the rules, and exceptions to the exceptions, then you can expect a lot of the EA exam to focus on exceptions.

How long do I have to pass the EA exam?

You have two years* to pass all three parts of the EA exam, so while you do not technically need to pass all three in the same year, many candidates want to pass before tax season to get more clients. This means appointments to take the exam early in the year can fill up quickly.

How many questions do you need to pass the EA exam?

The EA exam passing score is 105. The foundation of your EA score is the number of the 85 operational questions you answer correctly. The IRS mathematically transforms your number of correct answers to a standardized scaled score.