FAQs: Working as a remote tax preparer

As we talk to people who are interested in joining Intuit as a TurboTax Live expert, we hear many common questions about what the remote tax preparer experience is like. So we’re answering the top 10 questions here to help you decide whether this could be the right opportunity for you.

1. What experience and credentials do I need?

Different roles have different requirements:

For the Intuit Tax Associate role, you need: 

  • At least 2 seasons of paid tax preparation experience 
  • A minimum of 30 returns prepared per season 
  • An active Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN)

We also consider any volunteer tax preparation experience. This experience helps ensure that, after additional expert training with us, you can provide our TurboTax Live customers with the quality service they need.

For the credentialed Tax Expert role, you need: 

  • At least one of the following: 
    • An active credential as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA)  
    • An active credential as an Enrolled Agent (EA) 
    • Be a practicing tax attorney  
  • An active PTIN 
  • At least 2 years of recent experience preparing federal and state individual 1040 tax returns for customers using professional tax preparation software

We’re always looking for remote tax preparers who have bilingual proficiency in Spanish in the U.S. or French in Canada.

Prior experience in tax preparation for a tax practice or in a retail setting is also a plus.

If you have bookkeeping experience for small businesses, you may also be interested in a year-round role up to 40 hours a week with QuickBooks Live.

2. What are the benefits of joining Intuit as a TurboTax Live professional?

You can work remotely, earn extra income, and choose from work schedules that work best for you. Depending on minimum hours worked, you can also get benefits such as a 401K savings plan with Intuit matching, Employee Stock Purchase Plan, Employee Assistance Program, paid sick leave, Intuit-provided E&O insurance, product discounts, and a free personal tax return through TurboTax.

3. How many hours do seasonal tax preparers work?

To make sure that you’re in the rhythm of using our tools and taking calls, we would look for you to work a minimum of 20 hours a week. However, during the peaks in January and April, we need even more help, so you may have the option to work additional hours at those times.

4. What is the working season for tax professionals?

We have three peaks during the year for tax preparation:

  • The first peak is at the end of January when tax filing opens.
  • The second is in April around the tax filing deadline.
  • The third is in October for those who take tax extensions.

The typical working season is from early January to the end of April. Returning experts often have some choice about when they start work, so some can opt to begin even earlier than January.

5. How much training would I need to complete?

Training starts on your first day of employment and takes about 10 days to complete complete — including two full weekends, when TurboTax customers frequently work on their returns. There are both self-led and live remote sessions, and you will be paid during this period.

After the training period, you will get to jump into the role and work directly with customers.

6. What equipment does Intuit provide?

On your start date, you’ll receive a shipment with everything you need to serve customers:

  • A dedicated laptop with all the required software installed
  • A headset for communicating with customers
  • A webcam
  • An approved backdrop for video calls that attaches to the back of your chair
  • A coffee mug, of course!

There’s no cost to you to obtain or use any of Intuit’s equipment — it’s all provided as part of your employment. And you can contact Intuit support if you need help getting up and running. Equipment must be returned if you decide to leave Intuit.

7. How are TurboTax Live professionals paid?

Our Intuit tax associates are paid hourly. We offer competitive rates based on the state where you live. You’re also eligible for an end-of-season bonus based on performance. If you are bilingual in Spanish in the U.S. or bilingual in French in Canada, we offer a language differential.

8. Can Intuit help me earn my Enrolled Agent (EA) credential?

We’d love to support you in your career. Earning your EA credential opens the doors at TurboTax Live for promotional opportunities to a credentialed Tax Expert or equivalent role.

If you are hired as a Tax Associate, you can participate in our Intuit EA Credential Assistance Program. Intuit covers the cost of the program and provides the study materials from Fast Forward Academy, as well as a mentor to help you with questions. The EA program is an optional benefit for your personal development.

9. What if a customer asks a question I don’t know the answer to?

Don’t worry. Help is never more than a keystroke away. Within the TurboTax Live team, we use a messaging platform, where you can type in your questions while talking to a customer. Your lead, your manager, and the TurboTax Live expert network are there to provide answers. 

We also have Aid and Assist channels where you can get resources and even have someone look over your shoulder at the customer’s return in real time when necessary.

Given the wide range of customers and tax situations you’ll encounter, we don’t expect any one person to have all the answers. Many of our experts say that learning new things is the best part of the job!

10. Are there opportunities for year-round, full-time work?

Yes! The TurboTax Live team offers full-time tax preparer jobs, management roles, and positions to work on special projects, based on business needs. Seasonal employees can also apply for other full-time roles at Intuit, such as Bookkeepers for QuickBooks Live.

And there you have it: the top 10 most frequently asked questions about working as a remote tax professional with TurboTax Live.

If you’re ready for the next step, we’d love to schedule a call with you.

If you’re interested but not ready to apply, join our Talent Community to stay in touch.