Contact Us : 800.874.5346 | International: +1 352.375.0772
Contact Us : 800.874.5346 | International: +1 352.375.0772

Why Become an Enrolled Agent?

The Enrolled Agent designation is the highest credential the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) awards. Enrolled Agents (EAs), like attorneys and Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), have virtually unlimited practice rights; they are unrestricted as to which taxpayers they can represent, what types of tax matters they can handle (though they can’t give qualified opinions on earnings), and which IRS offices they can represent clients before.

Designed for tax practitioners seeking to represent taxpayers before the IRS, earning your EA can help you grow your business and advance your career in an increasingly competitive job market.

If you are wondering whether you should become an EA, here are four reasons to take the leap!

Why should I become an Enrolled Agent?


Certification could soon be a requirement

Congress has highlighted that the public faces high preparation fees, error-filled tax returns, and above-average error rates when dealing with non-certified tax preparers. Enrolled Agents, however, are recognized as individuals with special competence in tax matters and professional ethics.

Consequently, tax legislation has begun to evolve, and some lawmakers are pushing to require that tax preparers become certified. This puts unenrolled tax preparers at a disadvantage, but you can be prepared by becoming an EA before legislation takes effect.


Tax representation can be lucrative

For every client who files their tax return on time, there may be several more who file late, owe back taxes, or have some other tax issue that you can help rectify once you get your EA. You don’t need to rely on a CPA for these types of clients when you are an EA!

Remember, EAs have virtually the same representation rights as CPAs and are regarded as tax experts. So, as an Enrolled Agent, you may face difficult tax questions, but you will be compensated well for your expertise. Enrolled Agents earn 50% more on average than their unenrolled counterparts.

Plus, regardless of how the economy performs, people will always need help preparing taxes or dealing with the IRS, so becoming an EA offers job security as well!

Interested in seeing just how much money you can earn as an Enrolled Agent? Check out our EA salary guide!


Fewer requirements than a CPA

The CPA Exam has a whole slew of requirements and educational prerequisites that vary slightly from state to state. In contrast, the EA designation has no educational prerequisites, though the IRS does require you to get a PTIN and pass the EA exam, also known as the Special Enrollment Exam (SEE).

It’s really that simple! After you get your PTIN, pass the EA exam, and complete an IRS background check, you can focus on tax preparation and client representation without having to jump through the hurdles required to become a CPA.


The EA is borderless

Unlike CPAs, who have to attain a different license for each state, EAs can practice in any state. You avoid having to reapply to an individual state board of accountancy if you want to move out of state. This makes earning the EA a prime consideration for tax advisors looking to transition to remote work! It also qualifies you to work in tax at large corporations with national and international presences.

It is important to note, while Enrolled Agents have nearly unlimited practice rights, they can’t provide qualified opinions on financial statements like a CPA can. So, if your goal is to practice both assurance and tax, you will need your CPA license for any state where you do assurance work. However, if your practice is focused on tax and you want the ability to serve tax clients from anywhere in the U.S., the EA designation is the most effective and economical option.

Compare the CPA and EA on our blog!

How can Gleim help you become an Enrolled Agent?

Clearly, becoming an EA has career benefits, and passing the EA exam is the most important part of the process. We have been preparing EA candidates to pass the exam with confidence for more than 20 years. In that time, we have helped more EAs pass than any other review provider.

With our adative learning technology, SmartAdapt™, and our Access Until You Pass® guarantee, our Premium EA Review can help you pass with confidence!