This is the ideal job for retired accountants, or anyone with a knack for numbers and no fear of tax forms. Tax preparers can either work for an established tax preparation franchise like H&R Block, or go out on their own and recruit clients from friends, neighbors and local businesses. The work is highly seasonal, with the bulk of your billable hours coming between January and April, but experienced tax preparers can earn up to $30 an hour during the busy tax season [source: Dobosz].
You don't have to be a certified public accountant (CPA) to prepare tax forms professionally, but you do have to register with the IRS. Starting in 2011, all tax preparers need to pay $64.25 a year for a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). And in mid-2011, tax preparers will have to pass an IRS competency exam, unless you're already a CPA, an attorney or an employee for an established tax preparation company [source: IRS].