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How to Work Part Time in Tax Prep (and Why You Would Want To)

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Whether you’re looking to work part-time throughout the year or full-time for a few months during the busy season, tax preparation can be very flexible and rewarding work. These 4 steps will help you consider your options and get started with part-time tax prep.

1. Define your “why.”

There are so many good reasons to take on the role of tax expert. Knowing what’s most important to you will help you choose the right direction. Here are some of the benefits that people appreciate most about part-time tax prep work:

  • Earn extra income. Adding money to your monthly budget is compelling motivation! Especially if you can do it without taking on a full-time commitment.
  • Work remotely. The benefits of working online, whether from home or elsewhere, are much more familiar these days. You may be looking to avoid a long commute. You may want to maintain steady work but remain free to move or travel. Working from home may be better for your health. Being “location independent” is a great draw for many.
  • Choose a schedule that works for you. Part-time hours often fit better around other commitments, whether that’s parenting, caregiving, volunteering, schooling, personal projects, or professional pursuits.
  • Develop your expertise. Tax preparation is a dynamic and wide-ranging practice, and there’s always more to learn. Those at the beginning of their careers can gain valuable knowledge and also become more skilled at interacting with clients.
  • Use your experience to help others. If you’re winding down your career or already retired, part-time tax prep can be a wonderful way to stay busy while also using your well-developed skills to serve clients and colleagues.

2. Choose entrepreneurship, employment, or both.

You could start your own tax preparation practice, finding clients in your network and community. Running a business comes with additional responsibilities for marketing and administration, but it can also give you more control.

Another option is to work for a larger tax preparation service like Intuit. You’ll need to meet certain prerequisites, but once hired you can focus on the tax work itself and get support from a team of other experts.

But if both options appeal to you, you don’t have to choose. For example, you could maintain your own practice while also working at Intuit on TurboTax Live.

3. Get training and experience, if necessary.

If you’ve never done tax prep before, you can take a training course on the basics. In the U.S., you also need to obtain a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN).

From there you can learn as you work, either doing volunteer tax prep through nonprofit tax assistance initiatives to gain experience or earning as you go by charging clients or landing a paid position. Different states, as well as the IRS, have different regulations for paid tax preparers, so make sure you check your local area requirements.

Intuit requires that our Tax Associates have at least 1 season of paid tax preparation experience, but also takes volunteer experience into account.

At some point, you may want to earn your Enrolled Agent credential, which qualifies you for more advanced positions. If you are already a current Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or practicing tax attorney, you shouldn’t need any additional credentials.

4. Find the right opportunity.

If you decide that you’re interested in working for a tax prep company, the next step is to apply to an organization that fits your needs and values.

Intuit has been recognized as a top global employer, earning a spot as #11 on the list of Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2021. Intuit has been commended as being particularly supportive of women and parents, and the company is also named as one of America’s best employers for diversity by Forbes.

If you’re interested in seasonal work for Intuit at TurboTax Live, sign up for the Talent Community to learn more. Intuit has opportunities in both the U.S. and Canada and is always looking for candidates who are bilingual in Spanish (in the U.S.) or French (in Canada).

If you have the qualifications you need and are ready to apply, let’s talk! You can schedule a call today.