Frequently Asked Questions
What’s an Enrolled Agent (EA)?
Simply put, it’s that rare breed of finance geek that loves helping clients with tax issues.
It is a federally-authorized tax practitioner who has technical expertise in the field of taxation and who is empowered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury to represent taxpayers before all administrative levels – examination, collection, and appeals – of the Internal Revenue Service. It is the highest credential the IRS awards.
Difference between EA and CPA?
The difference between a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) and an EA can be prepared to the differences between physicians. A physician may know a bit about each specialty but limit their practice to one area. Just because someone’s a physician doesn’t mean you’d want them operating on your heart. They may be a podiatrist. A CPA is allowed to prepare taxes and represent clients, but may not specialize in it. An EA only deals with taxes. A CPA can be an EA, and an EA can be an accountant and/or a CPA, but they do not necessarily have the same knowledge and expertise.
Another difference is that CPA is licensed at the state level and can only practice in the state they are licensed, whereas an EA is a federally licensed tax specialist. In this role, they have unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before the IRS in any situation.
My business is an LLC, why do I get asked what type of business I am for taxes?
An LLC is a state and legal designation, not an IRS entity. A business that is an LLC may be a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation.