Tax examiners will always be in demand, so as long as the government needs its money and that constant need is unlikely to change. Tax workers are in charge of making sure the government collects all taxes owed, though examiners do different work than collectors and revenue agents.
Examiners are the ones who will be reviewing tax returns from individuals for accuracy and identifying all taxes that are payable to the IRS. They also double check to make sure all tax credits and deductions are fairly applied.
These tax professionals can be employed at the local, state or federal level. They also report any adjustments or corrections they make to the state. They usually only handle individual tax returns, or perhaps that of small businesses. Larger corporations have more complex returns and these must be analyzed by a more experienced tax worker.
How to Break Into the Tax Examiner Field
The entry-level path for this career is merely clerical work, including data entry and other office duties. Tax examiners will grow in their position and will eventually learn how to analyze tax returns, not only mathematically, but also ensuring that the amounts entered support the numbers from other sources.
For example banks and employers also have statements listing income and this must be carefully compared to the filed tax return. Social Security numbers have to match, and all discrepancies must be investigated by the agent, usually by telephoning the filer.
In this position, you are working for the government and will be either issuing refunds or requesting additional payment. You also assess fees, interest and penalties. While tax returns are usually the height of your study, in some cases, tax examiners may work with more complex problems such as pensions or business expenses and operating losses.
The environment is always pleasant and quiet. You work in an office and work at your own pace for the most part, though at times travel may be required. You may have to go visit someone in a private firm and perhaps even ask for access to their tax records. Tax examiners typically work a full week, with occasional overtime in the January-April period.
The Education Required for a Tax Examiner Career
If you plan on working for the IRS or another government agency, than a bachelor’s degree and some work experience in this field are required. Even after your hiring, you will have to attend additional training classes. If you work with state or county government offices, then you may be able to apply for a job with only an associate’s degree, or even a high school diploma, in some rare cases.
Then again, specialized experience is never looked down upon and does set an applicant apart from the minimum standard. Work experience, that would impress an employer, might include a bookkeeping job, as well as a background in accounting.
This is a career choice that will keep you mentally challenged, physically comfortable, and always taken care of in terms of steady income.