Tax advisers work with clients to ensure they pay the right amount of tax, and plan their finances.

What does a tax adviser do?

Tax advisers work with large companies, smaller businesses and individuals. They usually specialise in an area of taxation, for example:

  • corporate
  • VAT
  • international
  • personal
  • inheritance and trusts.

Main tasks would include:

  • meeting clients and discussing their financial situation
  • gathering information and data to calculate the amount of tax due
  • checking and completing tax returns
  • auditing clients’ tax records
  • explaining tax laws to clients and finding ways to reduce their tax liabilities
  • producing reports or presentations for clients
  • negotiating with HM Revenue and Custom on your client’s behalf
  • keeping up to date with changes in tax laws and regulations.
  • In some jobs, you may also provide other accountancy services for clients.

What do I need to do to become a tax adviser?

Many people working in financial services can offer advice about tax issues, for example accountants and independent financial advisers. However, to make the most out of a career in this field, it is highly recommended that you gain a professional qualification in taxation. For example, those offered by the Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT) or the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT).

You can start out in taxation in a number of ways:

  • as a trainee with a company after leaving college
  • through a graduate training scheme after finishing university
  • by completing a Higher Apprenticeship in Professional Services
  • by transferring from another profession, such as accountancy or law.

Related skills

  • Attention to detail
  • Communication
  • IT
  • Leadership
  • Numeracy
  • Problem solving
  • Teamwork

Academic route

  • GCSEs, including English and maths
  • Two or three A levels

Where to find out more

Where could I be working?

You could work for an accountancy firm, a specialist tax consultancy, or a large company with its own in-house tax department. Opportunities are also available with banks, law firms and HM Revenue and Customs. You could move between these sectors during your career. 

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

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