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Tax Preparer Salary (United States)

For Tax Preparers, hourly average wages total $11.84 per hour. Including potential for bonuses and profit sharing — peaking near $5K and $9K, respectively — total cash payment to Tax Preparers can bottom out near $18K or peak near $56K depending on individual performance. While years of experience and the individual firm impact pay for this group, residence is the most influential factor. Female Tax Preparers are more common than men among those who completed the survey; more than half (69 percent) are women. Most Tax Preparers like their work and job satisfaction is high. Medical benefits are awarded to roughly a fifth, and nearly one-eighth earn dental coverage. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Tax Preparer Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$19,882 - $69,964
(Median)
20K
29K
40K
51K
70K
MEDIAN: $39,547
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Tax Preparer Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$8.18 - $21.94
(Median)
8
12
17
22
MEDIAN: $11.00
10%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Salary
$19,882 - $69,964  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,823  
Profit Sharing
$96.96 - $9,274  
Commission
$103.04 - $23,037  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$17,559 - $55,508  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 342
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$11$22$33
Hourly Rate
$8.18 - $21.94  
   
Overtime
$11.92 - $32.80  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$22K$44K$66K
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,823  
   
Commission
$103.04 - $23,037  
Profit Sharing
$96.96 - $9,274  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$17,559 - $55,508  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,209
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Job Description for Tax Preparer

A tax preparer assists an individual, a company, or organization in setting up and writing an accurate income tax return to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) each year. Preparers must make sure the entity for which the tax forms are being prepared pays the lowest taxes allowed by law; they must do this while ensuring that any deductions, exemptions, or claims adhere to current tax laws.
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Tax Preparer Tasks
  • Examine receipts, paystubs, and other documentation to fill out financial forms.
  • Apply deductions and credits according to regulations.
  • Fill out, complete, and submit tax returns.

Common Career Paths for Tax Preparer

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Tax Preparers who go on to become Tax Managers may see their salaries climb quite a bit. Median pay for Tax Managers is $90K annually. When Tax Preparers are ready for the next step in their careers, they often become Senior Tax Accountants or Enrolled Agents. Those roles pay an additional $35K and $16K, respectively.

Tax Preparer Job Listings

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job title / company
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Popular Employer Salaries for Tax Preparer

Many Tax Preparers can be found at H&R Block, Liberty Tax Services, Inc., Jackson Hewitt Tax Services, Inc, HR Block, and H & R Block, firms that are at the top of the field. Tax Preparers seeking a sizable paycheck can earn the most at H & R Block, where the average salary comes to $25K.
With a median salary of only $20K, Liberty Tax Services, Inc. pays the least. It seems that the compensation range of $16K to $29K isn't that wide, either.

Popular Skills for Tax Preparer

Survey results imply that Tax Preparers put a diverse skill set to use. Lucky workers who know Tax Consulting can expect a significant pay bump, scoring salaries 21 percent above average. Bookkeeping and Quickbooks are also correlated to pay that is above average, with increases between 14 percent and 21 percent. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Customer Service. Those educated in Customer Service tend to be well versed in Tax Compliance.

Pay by Experience Level for Tax Preparer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Tax Preparers who reported more years of relevant experience also reported higher earnings. The average worker who claims fewer than five years of experience earns around $23K. In contrast, however, individuals who report five to 10 years in this occupation see a much larger median of $32K. For Tax Preparers, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $40K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income of $48K, which is barely higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.

Pay Difference By Location

San Francisco
up arrow 118%
Dallas
up arrow 58%
San Diego
up arrow 43%
Cleveland
up arrow 36%
Los Angeles
up arrow 31%
New York
up arrow 22%
Portland
up arrow 11%
Appleton
up arrow 11%
Santa Rosa
up arrow 10%
National Average
$29,000
San Antonio
up arrow 12%
Chicago
up arrow 13%
Memphis
up arrow 13%
Rochester
up arrow 16%
Buffalo
up arrow 20%
Houston
up arrow 33%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For those looking to make money, Tax Preparers in San Francisco enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 118 percent above the national average. Tax Preparers will also find cushy salaries in Dallas (+58 percent), San Diego (+43 percent), Cleveland (+36 percent), and Los Angeles (+31 percent). Place of residence plays a huge part in a Tax Preparer's salary, with Houston Tax Preparers earning salaries that are 33 percent less than the national average. Employers pay around 20 percent less in Buffalo and 16 percent less in Rochester, below-median salaries for those in this field.

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Experience Affects Tax Preparer Salaries

National Average
$29,000

Skills That Affect Tax Preparer Salaries

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 257 votes.

Gender

Female
69%
female alumni
 
Male
31%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
10%
1-4 years
42%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
18%
20 years or more
11%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 20% dental benefits Dental: 12%
vision benefits Vision: 8% employee benefits None: 79%