Become an Enrolled Agent Internal Revenue Service


how to become an enrolled agent

So, if you qualify for the second option, you can skip to the last step of the guide. The following content is just for those pursuing the first option, aka the EA exam. Further, the only other professionals who hold such status before the IRS are Certified Public Accountants and attorneys.

  • That candidate has until June 1, 2023 to pass the remaining part.
  • Further , CPAs typically charge more for their tax services.
  • The knowledge you obtain from studying for the test and maintaining your license will give you the ability to prepare more complicated returns.
  • With your PTIN, you’ll be eligible to take the EA exam.
  • I am the author of How to Pass The CPA Exam and the publisher of this and several accounting professional exam prep sites.
  • The practice of enrolled agents before the IRS is not limited and they may represent taxpayers before the IRS, performing the same tasks as an Attorney or CPA.

Questions that contain the term “current year” refer to calendar year 2021. In answering questions, candidates should not take into account any legislation or court decisions in effect after December 31, 2021. An individual can become an EA if he has worked for the IRS for five years, or if he has taken the Special Enrolment Examination, which consists of three parts. The first part consists of questions on tax codes for individuals, the second part on tax codes for business entities, and the last part on Circular 230 and the Treasury Department guide.

The test is offered from May 1 to the end of February of the following year. The test is not offered during the annual blackout period in March and April. During this time the test is updated with the most recent tax law.

How do I become an EA?

Unlike an EA, a Certified Public Accountant can do financial statement audits. If you are a CPA, then there is no need to become an EA because a CPA is qualified to perform the duties of the EA. A case where this might make sense is if you work as an EA while you are preparing to sit for your CPA exam with the goal to continue work in taxation. Otherwise, it would be redundant to go for the EA when you are already a CPA. CPAs on the other hand have many more job opportunities.

how to become an enrolled agent

But now you’ll have to put in some work to maintain your enrolled agent status. In other words, you’ll have to meet the continuing education requirements. To further inform your decision, learn more about the enrolled agent exam costsand theEA exam pass rates. This information will help you decide if the EA makes sense for you. For transparency, EAs don’t actually work for the IRS.

What Are the Enrolled Agent Requirements?

We make it easy for you to get the continued professional education hours you need to be compliant and sharpen your tax professional skills when you are a member of TxSEA. Learn real life tax issues and how to start your own business, from established tax professionals.

how to become an enrolled agent

In doing so, you can feel confident that you current with IRS regulations. You will also not be required to take the IRS Annual Refresher Course. EA’s are automatically added to the IRS National Database list of credentialed preparers.

Q: What is an Enrolled Agent?

Generally, it takes about a month to prepare for each part of the enrolled agent exam (between 3-4 months total). Of course, the length of your journey to become an enrolled agent depends on your prior tax experience.

At this time, numerous U.S. citizens had government claims regarding property confiscated during the war. With the new designation, enrolled agents were given the ability to represent citizens and prepare claims. After Congress passed the income law in 1913, the duties of EAs were expanded to include tax representation. To receive the enrolled agent license, you must apply for enrollment within 1 year of passing all 3 exam parts. You apply by filling out and submitting Form 23. An Enrolled Agent is a tax specialist who has been federally authorized to represent taxpayers before all levels of the IRS. Unlike CPAs, enrolled agents are eligible to practice in all states without additional licensing requirements.

Why Get an Enrolled Agent License?

The EA licensing examination contains three parts, each consisting of 100 multiple-choice questions. Of those 100 questions, 85 questions count toward the test-taker’s score. The other 15 questions are experimental and are not scored. Learn more about what you can do to support the enrolled agent campaign. You may electronically apply for enrollment and make secure payment of the $67 enrollment fee at

Recession proof career – Income taxes are not going away anytime soon. Enrolled Agent status is the highest credential awarded by the IRS. The EA credential is recognized across all 50 U.S. states.

Step 8: Pick an Enrolled Agent Course and Start Studying: How to Find an Enrolled Agent Review Course

Practice in other federal courts is generally limited to persons licensed as attorneys. Transferring funds from another bank account to your Emerald Card may not be available to all cardholders and other terms and conditions apply. There are limits on the total amount you can transfer and how often you can request transfers. MetaBank® does not charge a fee for this service; please see your bank for details on its fees. Enrolled Agents do not provide legal representation; signed Power of Attorney required. Terms and conditions apply; seeAccurate Calculations Guaranteefor details. Once you have passed the examination, there’s also a “compliance check” to verify that you have diligently filed your own taxes and have no outstanding tax debts.

What are the 3 parts of the EA exam?

The exam is comprised of three parts: Part 1 – Individuals. Part 2 – Businesses. Part 3 – Representation, Practice and Procedures.

It’s something most tax preparers should be able to pass if they study, which makes the short list of requirements pretty great news. Unlimited how to become an enrolled agent Earning Potential, Enrolled Agent Salary – You control your career. You can start your own business with unlimited earning potential.

When becoming an enrolled agent you will have several obligations and one of the first obligations is to the IRS. If the agency requests documentation from you, you must comply with the request or order for documents.

As part of an EA’s job responsibilities, he or she often develops a strategy for handling matters with the IRS. In this capacity, enrolled agents work to reach satisfactory agreements regarding plans, payments, estimations, and settlements. Due to the fact that this type of work can be quite complex, the job of an EA is often in high demand.

Their knowledge and experience uniquely position Lambers to maximize your training and cut down on your prep time. The financial world operates with a 365 day year and so do we. Season in and season out, we are always developing new titles and enhancing existing ones. This focus maximizes your training efficiency and ensures you are always in-the-know about the current hot topics. Our online electronic flash cards turn “down time” into productive study time.

  • Let’s look at what this type of career is and what you will likely be doing.
  • They will represent taxpayers when dealing with issues, such as tax appeals, collections, and audits.
  • An enrolled agent can negotiate with the IRS during examinations and appeals, and act in place of a taxpayer signing consents and executing agreements on their behalf.
  • Enrolled agents are licensed by the IRS and are a federally licensed tax practitioner who has unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before the IRS.
  • In general, any overdue tax return that has not been filed or any unpaid taxes unless acceptable payment arrangements have been established.

Spending 6 weeks waiting for your PTIN could drastically cut into your overall EA exam progress. Therefore, you should definitely take the online approach. There are 2 paths you can take to the EA designation. Once you know for certain that you want to become an enrolled agent, you must select your path.

You should also read the EA exam candidate bulletin. Total testing time for each exam part is 3.5 hours. Furthermore, you can sit for the EA exam during the annual testing window from May 1 to February 28 of the following year.

Since then, it has become a bona fide career with the benefits of technical experience, federal oversight of the practice, governmental oversight, and even their own publications. In fact, enrolled agent certification is the highest credential the Internal Revenue Service offers. Overall, it is easier and faster to become an EA than a CPA.

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This will expand your client base helping you to generate more income. In any case, you shouldn’t study for the 3 exam parts at the same time. While taking all 3 parts at once is an option, it’s not the best strategy for passing because it can get overwhelming and may increase your odds of failing an exam part. Therefore, you should simply focus on one exam part at a time instead. You should start studying before you schedule your first exam date.

Description of benefits and details at There are currently no educational requirements to become an enrolled agent. Many consider this option as an alternative to traditional college or university backgrounds.

How difficult is the EA exam?

On the EA exam, candidates have 3.5 hours to answer 100 MCQs. In contrast, the REG exam requires candidates to complete 76 MCQs and 8 TBSs within 4 hours. The EA exam dedicates a bit more attention to limits, phase-outs, and income brackets. Therefore, the EA exam is not extremely difficult.

The only other professionals who hold such status before the IRS are CPAs and attorneys. EAs are a sort of accountant, so you will need to be detail oriented, diligent, and highly analytical. You will need to be comfortable spending long hours analyzing spreadsheets and assessing financial documentation.

Entry-Level Salaries for EA Agents

It’s also not necessary to have experience in accounting or math. However, it can be rather helpful to complete tax training. If you want to become an enrolled agent, you will also need to pass a three-part comprehensive test. This test is known as the Special Enrollment Examination. It will cover business and individual laws, along with representation issues.


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