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How To Choose A Good Tax Return Preparer

How to choose a good tax return preparer

  • What are the types of questions that you should be asking anyone, if you’re interviewing them to be your tax preparer?
  • One of the very first question, and the most important question, is what is your tax preparer’s aggression level? The way that I describe that normally is on a scale from zero to ten, zero means you never ever get contacted by the IRS ever, unless you get pulled for a random audit and ten means you and your tax preparer are both going to jail.
  • For example, a very conservative CPA may tell you not to take a home office, but a CPA that is at a seven or eight will tell you absolutely take a home office, if it’s a valid deduction for you. Definitely one of the most important questions that I can recommend is to ask about the aggression level of the person you’re talking to, about how they view the world, and whether or not they’re also using court cases. For example, if you’re more on the aggressive level, are you using current court cases? How up to date are you on the current laws?

It’s Shauna, the Tax Goddess, here with you live today from taxgoddess.com. Today I wanted to talk about how important it is that you get a good tax preparer.

There are lots of different ways to prepare your taxes. There’s TurboTax, which never recommend getting your taxes getting done out of a box, but TurboTax is an option. You have companies like H&R Block or Liberty Tax, and you can find some amazing tax preparers there.

Today really what I wanted to go over … Of course, you have CPAs. Really what I wanted to go over are the types of questions that you should be asking anyone, as you’re interviewing them to be your tax preparer.

One of the very first questions, and the most important question in my mind is what is your tax preparer’s aggression level? The way that I describe that normally is on a scale from zero to 10, zero meaning you never, ever get contacted by the IRS ever, unless you get pulled for a random audit, because that can happen, all the way up to a 10, meaning you and your tax preparer are both going to jail. You want to decide, as an individual, where on that scale do you want to be? Do you want to be at a two or a three, so you’re looking for a conservative type CPA? Or do you want to be a five or a six, somewhere in the middle? Or do you want to be at a seven or eight, meaning nobody’s going to jail, but you’re definitely pushing the envelope.

When you’re having a discussion with a CPA or a tax preparer, you’re interviewing them to be your tax preparer, or your CPA, make sure that you’re asking that question, that you really know where do they stand. Because when you have the answer to that question, they will also be able to advise you the best choice and the best path for any deductions that you want to take.

For example, a very, very conservative CPA may tell you not to take a home office, but a CPA is that at a seven or eight will tell you absolutely take a home office, if of course, it’s a valid deduction for you. Definitely one of the most important questions that I can recommend, ask about the aggression level of the person you’re talking to, about how they view the world, and whether or not they’re also using court cases. For example, if you’re more on the aggressive level, are you using current court cases? How up to date are you on the current laws?

One of the things that’s coming up, for example, next week, I am actually headed to Washington, D.C. The IRS is having their national tax forum, so we’re going to be there for three days, coming up. I absolutely can’t wait to be getting you guys new information, new tax court cases, all sorts of new ways that we can get more deductions.

If you have any questions on how to choose a CPA, definitely let us know. We’d be happy to go over any of that with you. Reach out to us on taxgoddess.com, or of course Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest. There’s lots of ways that you can find us.

Hope you’re having a great day, and look forward to helping you guys soon. Thanks.

 

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PLEASE NOTE: As of late Aug 2018 there was a proposed law change that would disallow a double deduction for these charitable credits at the federal level for contributions made after Aug 2018. You are still eligible for the AZ state tax credits as the change would only impact your ability to take them as charity donations at the federal level.
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