Enrolled Agents: Unsung Tax Professionals

When clients lern I m n Enrolled gent with the vriety of responses follow. Some pnic, thinking I m n uditor or some sort of secret tx-gent. Others mistkenly believe I m n employee of the IRS. More often thn not, however, I get the response “Enrolled gent, wht is tht?” Enrolled gents re certinly re. There re only 46,000 Enrolled gents in the United Sttes nd only hndful tht pctice in West Virgini. Wht is n Enrolled gent nd why did I choose to become one? These re best ed with little historicl detil.

fter gduting college with Bchelor degrees in ccounting nd economics, I spent some time mpping the pths my creer might tke. I hd sevel yers of experience prepring tx returns nd pssion for the mechnics of business. How could I combine ccounting, tx preption, nd business sttegy? Prt of the ws to shrpen my business skills by pursuing Msters Degree in Business dministtion. The complete rrived shortly fter strting the MB progm. I ws shring my creer qundry with clssmte nd he sid, “Why not become n Enrolled gent.” My response: “n Enrolled gent, wht is tht?” He went on to explin tht n Enrolled gent is tx professionl licensed nd regulted by the United Sttes Deprtment of Tresury.

I hd my . Becoming n Enrolled gent took nine months of intense study nd pssing two-dy, four-prt exm deling exclusively with fedel : individuls, businesses, corpotions, esttes, trusts, nd IRS procedures.

Enrolled gents (E) re independent tx professionls, licensed nd regulted by the United Sttes Tresury Deprtment. Enrolled gents re not employees or representtives of the IRS. The term “Enrolled” mens to be licensed to pctice by the fedel government. The term “gent” mens uthorized to pper in plce of the txpyer before the IRS (only Enrolled gents, ttorneys, nd CPs my represent txpyers before the IRS). Enrolled gents work for their clients nd re qulified to prepre ll tx returns presented to the IRS. They re lso licensed to represent their clients before ll dministtive levels of including udits, collections, nd ppels.

fter proving their expertise in the field of , Es’ must continue to shrpen their skills nd keep up with the ever-chnging tx code by receiving t lest 72 hours of continuing eduction every three yers. Es who, like me, re members of the Ntionl ssocition of Enrolled gents must receive t lest 90 hours of continuing eduction to mintin their membership.

Unlike other tx professionls, only Enrolled gents re required to demonstte their comence in mtters of directly before the US Tresury Deprtment. Only Enrolled gents receive their right to pctice directly from the fedel government (other representtives re licensed by the sttes). nother difference between Es nd other tx professionls is tht ll Enrolled gents specilize in . Other professionls my or my not choose to specilize in .

lthough Enrolled gents re not s plentiful s other types of tx professionls, keep them in mind if you need ssistnce prepring your business or tx returns, or find yourself in hot with the IRS.

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