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On "Pick Shauna's Brain" Concept
A significant contribution of CPAs in the practice of public accounting is the audit, whereby an independent opinion is expressed as to the fairness of financial statements. CPAs also perform almost every conceivable financial and management advisory service for business and individuals. CPAs do general accounting, tax planning and advice, tax return preparation, estate planning, personal financial planning and representation of clients before government agencies. CPAs also help clients choose and implement accounting systems. They help in the development and analysis of financial models, cost controls, profit plans, and internal reports. CPAs are often consulted on business, civic and other problems on which their judgment, experience and professional standards permit them to provide helpful advice and assistance.
If the IRS audits me, can a CPA, accountant, or paid tax preparer represent me?
A CPA has demonstrated professional competence by passing a rigorous examination and meeting high standards of education. In addition, they must meet strict continuing education requirements and adhere to a stringent set of ethical standards.
CPAs are authorized to represent taxpayers in an IRS audit, as are attorneys and other professionals known as enrolled agents (EA). An EA is an individual who has demonstrated technical competence in the field of taxation and are the only taxpayer representatives who receive their right to practice from the U.S. government. An accountant or paid tax preparer can only represent a taxpayer before the IRS if he or she is an EA.
Any professional you choose should not only have the technical knowledge required, but should also treat you with respect.
Does your CPA and advisor take time to listen to you?
Does your CPA and advisor return your calls in a timely manner?
Do you feel comfortable asking your CPA and advisor a question?
When you need a professional in the region who will make you their top priority, call and let us help.
It will depend on what you want us to do for you. As a potential client, we will want to see copies of your most recently filed income tax returns – preferably the last 3 years. If you are a new business client, we will also want to see copies of your most recent financial statements. Depending on the type of engagement we are undertaking, we may also want to see your wills and estate plans, business agreements, insurance documents, investment and bank statements, employee benefit statements, divorce or separation agreement, and anything else you think might be relevant. As a new tax client, we will also ask you to prepare a Client Organizer which we can send to you in advance of our meeting.
We use engagement letters that define the work and the associated fees before any work is performed. The letter is designed to prevent any misunderstandings and describes in detail the services to be rendered, fee ranges and other terms and conditions of the engagement. It is a contract determining our responsibilities and your responsibilities and sets both of our expectations for a successful relationship.
We base our fees on a number of factors including the type of services required, the time required to perform the services, the level of expertise and experience required, and the complexity of the work. The fees at Tax Goddess Business Services®, PC fall into three categories:
Hourly based fees— For historical cleanup type work we are compensated based on the numbers of hours it takes to complete the work. We are happy to quote our hourly rates and to provide fee estimates for specific tasks.
Task based pricing— Our tax preparation service is priced based on the number and types of required forms and schedules. Pricing is based on the complexity of the related tax law, tax research and continuing education required to remain current on the voluminous, constantly changing federal and state tax laws.
Fixed fee services— For some longer term projects or commitments such as monthly maintenance plans or Tax Plans we charge a fixed fee
Different types of services command different rates because of the expertise level of the people who perform them. We will talk frankly with you about our fees and put together a plan that utilizes the right CPA or staff person for the services you need so that the value of the service and the price of the service make sense for you. But when your tax return or project is finished, our service does not end. We will answer any of your questions during the year by phone or email and in most instances, at no additional cost.
We can help…
Recommend tax planning strategies
Prepare tax returns
Advise individuals on personal financial planning, including retirement and estate planning
Review a company’s accounting system and recommending improvements
Consult on business problems and advising ways to improve the use of a client’s resources
Clients apply for loans and credit by gathering and preparing information required by lenders as well as refer clients to lending institutions in our referral network
Work with clients, attorneys and bankers on mergers, acquisitions, expansions, business formations, dissolutions and estate and trust planning
How can Tax Goddess Business Services® PC help my family and me, financially?
We can help…
Develop a personal financial plan
Create a family budget
Plan for retirement
Develop an estate plan
Assess insurance needs
Advise on divorce settlements
Devise savings and investment strategies
Build college funds
How can Tax Goddess Business Services® PC help me as a business owner?
We can help…
Set up accounting systems
Analyze operating results
Provide management consulting services
Develop budgets and business plans and forecasts
Prepare tax returns
Audit, review, or compile financial statements
Assess benefit and compensation plans
How can Tax Goddess Business Services® PC help me as a taxpayer?
We can help…
Develop tax strategies (our best yet has saved a client $60,000 PER YEAR of lowered taxes in one of our Certified Tax Coach Tax Strategy Plans)
Prepare tax returns
Minimize tax liability
The primary step is to commit to a partnership with us. While we believe we are very good at what we do, we are only as good as the information we have. For our relationship to be successful for you, you need to:
Be prepared to discuss your plans, goals, problems, and questions. We can most effectively advise you and serve your best interests when we understand your goals.
Gather all relevant personal and business financial information so we can get an accurate picture and ask specific questions.
Be clear and candid about what you expect from our services.
Keep us informed of changes in your professional and personal life. A marriage or divorce, the birth of a child, an inheritance, a career change, or a generous bonus can have a significant impact on your tax liability and financial goals.
Be open to new ideas, tools, and opportunities
And, of course, you need to make sure you (or your staff) meet your commitments to deliver appropriate, accurate, and timely information so that we have the information we need when we need it.
Will my information be kept confidential?
We maintain a policy of the strictest confidence concerning our client’s affairs. You can rest assured that no one will learn about your business or tax status – even relatives, associates or friends who might have referred you to us.
Referrals are the cornerstone of any service business. This firm relies on satisfied clients as the primary source of new business, and your referrals are both welcome and most sincerely appreciated!
Absolute Confidentiality – Since your referrals are generally individuals you are well acquainted with, you may have some concern that your business matters will be discussed with the new clients that you refer. This office guarantees the confidentiality of client information. Your personal, financial and tax data will not be shared with anyone else.
An Expression of Confidence – When you refer clients to us, you are expressing your faith and confidence in the services that we offer and will continue to provide to you. You may have business associates who need professional tax assistance or family and friends who struggle to do their own taxes every year. No matter who you refer, rest assured that their individual tax needs will be handled in the same professional manner as yours have been.
Ask Them to Call Early – The tax season schedule is a hectic one. Although new clients can always be accommodated, we recommend that your referrals call as early as possible for the best selection of appointment times and be sure they mention you’ve referred them.
Our firm has specifically hired multiple staff members with multiple different areas of specialty. Some of our strongest areas include:
Rental property owner
Commercial property owner
Hard money lending
CPA: stands for Certified Public Accountant
MTax: stands for Masters in Taxation
CTC: Certified Tax Coach
QB ProAdvisor: means that we have been certified by QuickBooks as one of their premier QuickBooks advisors and trainers.
I filed an extension for filing my income tax return. When does my return need to be filed?
Generally, the IRS will not extend the due date of your return for more than six months. This means that your return must be filed by either September 15 or October 15 each year. There may be exceptions if you are currently living out of the country or for other specific reasons.
We are happy to act as the intermediary between you and the IRS. We can arrange to have any meetings with the IRS take place at our office and are available to explain your return to the auditor. Our regular fees apply for the services unless you have purchased our peace of mind guarantee.
For individual tax returns we will provide you with the tax organizer that provide the basic format in which you can compile the information necessary for us to prepare your final return. The completion of this organizer will help us complete a more accurate and speedy tax return.
For business tax returns we prefer that you maintain your accounting records using the computerized accounting program. However, we have worked with materials in a most every imaginable form.
Note: we can help you set up a computerized accounting program, for example QuickBooks, if you would like.
Timelines to drop off data so we can prepare timely before a deadline are 6 weeks from the deadline.
Businesses: 2 months 15 days (normally 3/15/20XX) and extended 6 months later. Meaning we need all data and LOE’s no later than 2/1/20XX & 8/1/20XX
Individuals 3 months 15 days (normally 4/15/20XX) and extended 6 months later. Meaning we need all data and LOE’s no later than 3/1/20XX & 9/1/20XX.
Generally the refund is received within 2 to 3 weeks, if you E file and use the direct deposit service.
No. The three or six-year statute of limitations in certain cases, start once a return is filed. If no return is filed the running of the statute never starts andn the IRS can assess taxes for all years not filed. Remember, it’s always better to file overdue tax returns before the IRS comes knocking at your door.
Generally three years, if there is underreported gross income exceeding 25% the statute of limitations is extended to six years. If no return is filed or the return was fraudulent, the statue it never runs out!
Yes our CPAs provide comp runs of tax planning for both businesses and individuals. Tax planning is highly dependent on the facts and circumstances of each client. Please contact one of our CPA professionals to schedule an appointment to discuss how we can be of assistance to you. (You can also see our Tax Planning page on our website for more details on how we save clients THOUSANDS of dollars each year!)
As a condition of your agreement, any refund due you in the future year will be applied against the amount you owe.
Continue making your installment agreement payment as scheduled because your refund is not considered as a substitute for your regular payment due.
You may not get all of your refund if you owe certain past-due amounts, such as federal tax, estate tax, student loan, or child support.
The IRS should automatically apply the refund of the taxes owed. Note, this doesn’t always happen.
Age is a factor in the qualifying trial test, but qualifying relative can be any age. As long as the following dependency exemption tests are mad, you may claim him or her:
qualifying child qualifying relative test
dependent taxpayer test
citizenship or resident test
joint return test
If you owe additional tax for the prior year, you may have to make estimated tax payments for the current year. You must make estimated tax payments for the current year if both of the following apply:
You expect to owe at least $1000 in tax for the current tax year, after subtracting your withholding & credits.
You expect your withholding and credits to be less than the smaller of:
90% of the tax to be shown on your current year’s tax return, or
100% of the tax shown on your prior year’s return. Your prior year tax return must cover 12 months.
There are special rules for:
Certain taxpayers with higher adjusted gross income
Farmers and commercial fishermen
Estates and trusts
It depends on your financial personality. Do you prefer to have more withheld today so that you can get a refund next year? (This is really an interest-free loan from you to Uncle Sam.) Or are you disciplined enough to set aside some of your paycheck today and save it to pay your taxes next year? (You could invest the money in the meantime.)
It is also depends on your prior year tax liability. Do you know how to avoid an underpayment penalty situation?
We can tell you how to avoid the underpayment penalty, and we can compute approximately how much you will get back or have to pay in.
First you need to ask yourself, “How valuable is my time?” Imagine what you could be doing to build your business with that time. Could you earn more than what a CPA would cost? The answer to these questions will change as your business grows.
Second, you need to ask yourself if you have the skills and the desire to do it yourself. Will you have to learn these skills? Will you have to keep yourself updated? Do you really want to crunch numbers? Do you want more than just a report when you are done?
Our office does not provide sales tax preparation services. Sales tax regulations and reporting requirements continue to change rapidly. As your business grows, it is important that you are in close communication with your tax preparer about your company’s “Nexus” or presence in a state. Nexus describes the amount and degree of business activity that must be present before a state can tax an entity’s income. If a taxpayer has nexus in a particular state, the taxpayer must pay and collect/remit taxes in that state.
We recommend that you retain the CPA firm that provides your income tax preparation and other related services to prepare your sales tax filings and provide this important ongoing advisory service for you. Failure to comply with Sales and Use Tax regulations can easily result in significant penalties and other issues. Your tax preparer will be in the best position to either provide you with advisory services in this area directly, or direct you to the appropriate specialist within the firm. The investment in a professional with specific expertise in sales and use tax is critical to ensuring your company is always in compliance with the latest regulations.
We offer complete bookkeeping which covers an array of services to meet the needs of each individual client. We can assist you in all areas of your bookkeeping needs. A partial list of how we can help you are as follows
General ledger maintenance
What professional services are offered by Tax Goddess Business Services® PC
Tax planning both individual and business
Estate and gift tax
Business support services
Financial statement analysis
Sales tax preparation
Absolutely. The choice of picking an entity type is very specific to the facts and circumstances of each client. There are several different options to choose from when starting a new business and a thorough analysis can be performed to find the right entity for you and your business. What’s right for one individual or business may not be right for the next. Please contact one of our CPA professionals to schedule an appointment to discuss how we can be of assistance to you in this.
Frequently Tax Goddess Business Services® offers a wine and networking event to our clients, vendors, and general community. We do this in an attempt to raise business for our clients and of course network with each other in our local space.
Frequently Tax Goddess Business Services® seek donations, typically for an animal shelter, for items that the animal related charity is looking for. Our most recent charity drives included items such as:
Money (what charity doesn’t like cash!)