Unveiling the Truth: How Tax Preparers Earn and What They Make per Client

As tax season approaches, many individuals and businesses turn to tax preparers to help them navigate the complex world of tax returns. But how do these tax professionals earn their income? Do they get paid by the IRS? And how much do they make per client? This article aims to unveil the truth about how tax preparers earn and what they make per client.

How Do Tax Preparers Earn?

Tax preparers do not get paid by the IRS. Instead, they earn their income by charging fees to their clients for their services. These fees can be based on a variety of factors, including the complexity of the tax return, the time it takes to prepare the return, and the tax preparer’s level of experience and expertise.

Factors Influencing Tax Preparers’ Earnings

Several factors can influence how much a tax preparer earns. These include:

  • Experience and Expertise: Tax preparers with more experience and higher levels of expertise typically charge higher fees.
  • Geographical Location: Tax preparers in areas with a higher cost of living may charge higher fees.
  • Complexity of the Tax Return: More complex tax returns require more time and expertise to prepare, which can result in higher fees.
  • Additional Services: If a tax preparer offers additional services, such as financial planning or business consulting, they may charge additional fees for these services.

How Much Do Tax Preparers Make Per Client?

The amount a tax preparer makes per client can vary widely. According to the National Society of Accountants, the average fee for preparing an itemized Form 1040 with Schedule A and a state tax return was 4 in 2019. However, this is just an average, and the actual fee can be much higher or lower depending on the factors mentioned above.


In conclusion, tax preparers earn their income by charging fees to their clients, not by getting paid by the IRS. The amount they make per client can vary widely, depending on factors such as their experience and expertise, the complexity of the tax return, and the geographical location. As a client, it’s important to understand these factors and to discuss fees upfront when choosing a tax preparer.