IFA Level 4 Award for SME Tax Advisers

Key facts

  • Suitable for: if you need to understand tax as it affects small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) or for working in a tax practice with SME clients. It provides the skills to prepare basic tax computations and advise others of the effects of taxation on decision making.
  • Level: Level 4
  • Mode of study: self-study using bespoke e-book, recommended reading and past exam papers. 
  • Length of study: approximately six months of study or 150 hours of learning


The IFA Level 4 Award for SME tax advisers is for you if you aspire to work as a tax adviser to SMEs or in a tax practices with SME clients.

Course content

This is a highly vocational qualification for aspiring tax advisers. The aim of this Award is to enable you to develop an understanding of the structure and operation of the principal systems of UK tax as it affects SMEs and provide you with the skills to prepare tax computations and advise others of the effects of tax on decision making.

The Level 4 Award is a single unit qualification. On successful completion of this Award you will be able to:

  • Describe the objectives, structure and operation of the tax system.
  • Prepare income tax and national insurance computations for individuals and SMEs.
  • Prepare corporation tax computations for individuals and SMEs.

View the full details of the unit


The unit is assessed by a three hour exam. The exam includes 10 multiple choice questions and short and long answer questions with practical application. The exam sittings are in June and December each year.  

Entry requirements

To study the IFA Level 4 Award for SME tax advisers ideally you need to have:

  • Two A levels and three GCSEs in five separate subjects including maths or equivalent – these are standard entry requirements for UK university study.
  • Alternatively, at least one year’s practical experience of tax work.


See student fees for details.

You also need to arrange and pay to sit your exams at a suitable centre. See exam information for more information.

An e-book is also available to purchase directly from us. Please refer to the student fee page for prices.


This unit provides you with credit towards one of the units required for each of the first two qualifications listed below.

Level 4 Diploma for SME financial accountants 

Level 5 Diploma for SME financial managers

Once you hold the IFA Level 4 Award for SME tax advisers you are eligible for Associate tax adviser membership status of the IFA subject to your successful completion of the professional ethics short learning module and scenario-based-assessment which must be achieved within two years of completion of the Award.

Further information

For more information contact us.