What is a Tax Examiner?

If you want to apply your accounting knowledge and skills in a career that puts you directly in touch with numbers, then you should consider becoming a tax examiner. This job requires you to review tax returns for completeness and accuracy and resolve errors if present. Here is detailed roundup of everything you should know about tax examiners, including their primary duties and salary.

Primary Responsibilities of Tax Examiners

The primary responsibilities of tax examiners include the following;

  • Analyze tax returns to determine if there are any deductions or credits that should be made.
  • Examine tax returns to identify any errors.
  • Conduct tax audits.
  • Collect tax return documents and enter them in a computer system for processing.
  • Work with taxpayers to correct any mistakes that might surface during tax reviews.
  • Report any adjustments made on the tax returns to the state or federal government.
  • Check the tax returns to ensure the amount reported match the ones from other sources.

Where Tax Examiners Work

Over 50 percent of tax examiners work for the federal government as Internal Revenue Services (IRS) agents. Others work for the state and local government agencies. The IRS offers full-time, part-time and seasonal job opportunities. Most of their assignments involve a lot of office work. Only a few assignments may require traveling to taxpayer’s premises to perform audits.

How to Become a Tax Examiner

Aspiring tax examiners should have at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting or any other closely related discipline. Those who have an associate’s degree and some years of work experience in auditing, taxation and accounting may also be eligible for positions as tax examiners. As a tax student, you will take classes in finance, tax compliance laws and auditing for a period not exceeding four years. You will also need some work experience in a recognized tax institution.

In addition to acquiring the right education and experience, aspiring tax examiners must have the right skills set to perform well at work. They must have excellent analytical skills, be good with numbers and earn the trust of their clients and employers. They must also be able to work with minimum supervision, deliver under pressure and have good time management capabilities.

Career Paths for Tax Examiners

Those who want to grow themselves can do so as tax examiners. Career growth opportunities in this profession include transitioning from a basic tax examiner to a revenue agent or tax director. Your success will depend on the quality of work you produce as well your academic qualifications and level of experience.

Salary and Job Outlook

Tax examiners earn an average salary of $52,060 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This translates to $25.03 per hour. The Bureau, however, projects the employment growth rate to decrease by six percent over the next 10 years. This represents a decline of about 4,200 job positions. The drop is primarily attributed to reducing budgets in the local, state and federal governments.

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Tax examiners enjoy good working environments as well as numerous opportunities for career advancement. In order to succeed, you need to understand your roles as a tax examiner, get the right education and experience and acquire the right set of skills.