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An accountant is a trained professional who has satisfied the statutory and administrative requirements under applicable law to practice as a licensed public accountant. These requirements vary from State to State. The accountant is responsible for performing the accounting of a business. Certain accounting regulated services are restricted to licensed accountants who are either owners or employees of registered public accounting firms. In general terms, the main duty of an accountant is to prepare, evaluate, and attest to the accuracy and completeness of financial statements.  Other duties include:

  • Ensuring the accuracy of financial information and their compliance with relevant laws and regulations.
  • Preparing financial books and records and financial statements.
  • Preparing tax returns and advising on tax issues. In some cases, representing clients before taxing authorities such as the Internal Revenue Service.
  • Analyzing and evaluating the internal systems that affect business activities and practices.

See also: Certified Public Accountant

[Last updated in June of 2022 by the Wex Definitions Team]