On What Basis are Tax Preparers Paid?

There are several methods for paying a tax preparer. In the United States, most companies hire tax preparers during the tax season, which is four months tenure. Usually, they outsource tax preparers and hire them on a contract basis. Moreover, their salaries depend on their experience, proficiency level, the complexity of tax matters, and the region where they do tax preparation. 

In this blog, you will find out how tax preparers get paid. 

The following are several methods based on Which Tax Preparers Get Paid. 

The rate of a tax preparer relies upon his location and experience. Read below!

  • Hourly rate

Getting paid at an hourly rate is good for a new tax preparer. There are always highs and lows in tax preparations, so it is a better option for tax preparers to get paid hourly. Because there is no contract for them and they can get fired at hourly fees saves them from being broke. 

Usually, the pay rate on an hourly basis is 10 dollars per hour. This low rate is for an inexperienced tax professional. However, you can make more money if you are proficient. Some tax preparers choose to get paid on an hourly basis because of the following reasons. 

  • They think they are fairly compensated when paid hourly because they get paid according to the time spent doing taxes for a company. And you must have heard that “time is money”, so these tax professionals value this phrase and get paid hourly. 
  • The workload can be variable from client to client so that they can adjust their hourly rate accordingly. 
  • Hourly pay can be advantageous in a way that clients visualize the time a tax prepare spends doing their taxes. 

The drawback of hourly pay is for tax professionals that it gives clients the control to deduct money from their daily wage because they spent less time due to whatever reason. 

  • Commission 

For an experienced tax preparer with powerful billing ability, the commission is the best payment method. The commission is an incentive that highly experienced professionals charge from the clients’ fees. Some people call commission a percentage of refund which is in reality true.

Many tax people say commissions are the best way to add up your money if you are a tax preparer. To get a commission, some tax professionals maximize clients’ refunds. Resultantly, it creates a conflict of interest. Moreover, tax preparers try to do taxes speedily, which may result in errors and mistakes in tax returns. 

IRS (Internal Revenue Service) found a solution to solve negligent and fraudulent behaviors. They set penalties for the tax preparers. So, tax professionals should think twice before getting in trouble.

  • Flat fee

Tax preparers may fix how much money they will take for a business or an individual tax preparation. This payment method is settled prior to work and is not based on how many hours the work will take or how complex the work is. Moreover, you may tell your tax preparer what is included in this flat fee. And are there any extra charges for responding to IRS notices, tax planning or amendments? 

  • Combination of fees

A combination of fees means that a fixed price means a flat fee, and if the tax preparer does overtime, you will pay him for extra time, like an hourly fee. 

Some tax preparers will charge you more for extra advice like rental property issues, bookkeeping, tax planning, and representation in case of a Brooklyn tax audit


The basis on which tax preparers are paid has been discussed. However, it depends on the client and the tax preparer which method is more suitable.