Series of tax reforms, new restrictions on deductions and ever-changing tax laws can cause confusion during the already busy tax season. If you think you can take help of a professional, you’re not alone. According to the IRS, more than half of taxpayers prefer to hire a professional tax preparer.
However, you need to be careful in selecting your tax preparer, as you’re trusting him or her with your most personal information. Do a thorough research on tax preparer as you would for any service provider.
No matter who helps you file your returns, you are legally responsible for all the information on your return. While most professionals offer outstanding service, the IRS receives report of taxpayers’ fraud every year.
Tax preparers or CPAs are more than just a numbers cruncher. They are also a business advisor who would not only help you with preparing taxes but would also provide you suggestions on how to make the most of your tax deductions by demonstrating how various legal structures can save your time and money for your business.
It is important that the tax preparer is experienced in preparing tax forms. According to a report by the Government Accountability Office, only 2 of 19 tax preparers calculated the correct refund.
Asking questions beforehand would be worth the time it takes to ensure that you are hiring someone with the experience and skill level you need at a price you can pay for.
The infographic below suggests top questions you must ask a tax preparer before selecting one in this tax season.
- What is your expertise and industry knowledge of my business?
- Do you have your PTIN (Preparer Tax Identification Number)?
- How Do You Determine Your Fees?
- How Much of Your Time Can We Reasonably Expect?
- What Services Other Than Taxes, Do You Offer?
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