Tax consultants, also referred to as tax advisors or tax practitioners, are professionals who are educated in tax law and have thorough knowledge and understanding of the tax system of their countries. They are providing clients with financial/tax-related advices like how to compute taxes based on their investments and how to legally lower their tax liabilities.
Most tax accountants have earned a degree in accounting—it may be a bachelor’s or a master’s degree. Those who want to have a competitive edge over other accountants usually take the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam after graduation. New accounting graduates usually work for public accounting firms to gain experience. After getting the experience they need, some of them prefer to be self-employed while others become directors and partners within their firms.
There are two common work environments for tax consultants; it’s either they are self-employed or they are working for financial/tax firms.
A career in tax consultancy may be appealing to people who finds joy in working with numbers and solving problems; people who prefer a fast-paced work environment and enjoy doing extensive researches. One of the main challenges of being a tax consultant is the long work hours, especially during the tax season. It is also difficult for new tax consultants because they usually face a steep learning curve.
If you are in need of a tax consultant, make sure the professional you will be hiring possesses the following characteristics:
- Specialization – make sure that the tax consultant you are hiring is specializing in one or more areas of taxation (tax return preparation, tax planning, etc.) Look for that seasoned tax accountant offering specialized services because they are usually the masters of individual and business tax laws.
- Knowledge – the tax field is too large and tax regulations are ever-changing. There are only few people who have great knowledge about taxation; make sure you hire one of them. A good tax consultant should always familiarize himself/herself with the latest updates on tax regulations.
- Experience – why settle for new, inexperienced tax consultants if you can hire seasoned ones? Look for financial/tax companies with years of professional experience in the field of taxation.
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