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Salary Information for Forensic Accountants

Career News November 15, 2013

Forensic accountants are the investigative wing of accountancy. They often take on the most difficult cases, which likely involve some aspect of fraud, or at least unwitting but catastrophic error. This is a career choice that requires accounting skills, auditing ability, as well as investigating instincts. The job involves analyzing and interpreting data, considering evidence just as a criminal investigator would. This job qualifies workers for a hefty salary.

The Average Salary for Americans

The average accounting salary is $74,000 per year in a big city, though forensic accountants report anywhere from $30,000 to $60,000. The actual number depends on the location of the job, as well as the level of expertise you bring to the company. Some workers can easily make $150,000 per year.

An aspect that can help is seeking certification, namely as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). This means taking and passing the certification exam and meeting all levels of work experience. There may also be further schooling involved, and certification from a union, such as the American College of Forensic Examiners, can go a long way in boosting your salary.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, this career is rising and will do so for another three years. When recession strikes, fraud cases increase. The worse it gets, the more companies focus their efforts on preventing shortcuts and improprieties.

More Ideas on How to Increase Your Pay

While certification is always a safe bet, accumulating more experience is a wise move. Consultants get paid the highest because they branch out and offer specialty services. Seeking post-college education and work experience can also qualify you for greater responsibility and salary. To some extent, your city, industry specialty and experience affects your earning potential. Big cities usually pay more.

Specializing in a business sub-field can wield higher salaries. Individuals who seek out experiences and educational backgrounds in bankruptcy analysis can earn up to $72,000. Auditors and litigation support workers can earn between $50,000 to $60,000, and internal audit managers can earn up to $80,000. A desirable skill set includes leadership ability, experience in management, and strong social skills, since you will be conversing with management, as well as all levels of employees, or outside clients.

A College Education Starts You on the Right Track

Starting your career with a college degree is the best way to exceed expectations and be taken seriously as a qualified candidate. The best subject is accounting, above all related subjects. An MBA shows initiative and gives you the leadership abilities you need, as well as the critical analysis skills that companies depend on. Work experience also commands a higher salary, so aim to find work during college, perhaps as an accountant.

In this modern age, forensic accountants are helping companies earn more money by minimizing the chance for error and fraud, essentially playing a significant part in managing profitability. You can excel in this career profession by going back to school at UMCP, UCLA, University of Michigan, Drexel University, or another college of your choosing.

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  • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level.**
  • Transfer up to 90 credits into an undergraduate degree program.
  • Up to 50% of your master’s degree can be transferred in to help you get the most out of your hard work and maximize the credit you previously earned.
  • *BestColleges.com Gold Medal of Distinction
  • **excludes licensure, certification, and some doctoral programs
  • Accredited
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  • Transferable Credits
3 Program(s) Found
  • Available business concentrations include Accounting, Economics, General Management, Marketing, and Human Resource Management.
  • Ranked among the Best Online MBA and Online Graduate Business Programs in 2016 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Programmatic accreditation provided by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).
  • Regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
  • Online Courses
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  • Ready to earn your business degree? If you identify with at least one of the statements below, GCU could be a good fit for you!
  • I have worked in the business field for a number of years and want to further my education in order to qualify for promotions, leadership positions, and salary increases.
  • I am graduating from high school and am interested in pursuing a career in a business field, but I first need the skills experience.
  • I am interested in a Bachelor's, Master's or Doctoral degree in my specialized business area of focus.
  • I want flexible course offerings, such as the option of 100% online, evening or campus classes.
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  • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
  • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
  • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
  • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
2 Program(s) Found
  • Earn your Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) 100% online
  • Learn business and leadership skills through case studies and intensive projects, culminating in a capstone course
  • Program designed to teach students key concepts in accounting, financial services, and marketing
  • South University brings over 115 years of achievement and tradition to a supportive, online classroom
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits

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