Forensic Accountants and Auditors


Overview

Introduction

Forensic accountants and auditors, sometimes known as investigative accountants, investigative auditors, and certified fraud examiners, use accounting principles and theories to support or oppose claims being made in litigation. Like other accountants and auditors, forensic accountants are trained to analyze and verify financial records. However, forensic accountants use these skills to identify and document financial wrongdoing. They prepare reports that may be used in criminal and civil trials. The word "forensic...

Quick Facts


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Median Salary

$66,664

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Employment Prospects

Good

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Minimum Education Level

Bachelor's Degree


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Experience

Several years' experience in general accounting/auditing


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Skills

Financial


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Personality Traits

Conventional

Earnings

Most forensic accountants work within accounting firms and earn salaries that are commensurate with those of other accountants. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the median annual earnings for accountants and auditors as a whole were $70,500 in May 2018. The top paid 10 percent of accountants earned more than $122,840, and the bottom paid 10 percent earned less than $43,650. Accountant...

Work Environment

Forensic accountants typically work in bright, clean offices. A great deal of their work is done on computers and telephones, though most also occasionally travel to the offices of clients or those under investigation.

Because forensic accountants are hired to help clients prepare for trial, they often must work under tremendous pressure. They frequently encounter tight deadlines and cha...

Outlook

The U.S. Department of Labor predicts the field of accounting will grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through 2028. As the economy grows, more accountants will be needed to prepare books and taxes for new and growing companies. New accountants also will be needed to replace those who retire or change professions. Since about 1.4 million people currently work as accountants, t...

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