Top Tips for Choosing the Right Tax Preparer
If it is time to file your tax return and you need help of a professional, you need to keep some factors in mind when you are making your selection. Here are things to consider when you are choosing a tax preparation service.
The first tip for choosing a tax preparation service is to ensure that they have Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). It is a requirement for anyone preparing tax to have a valid PTIN. Another important qualification to review is their certification and education. A good preparer would have passed the IRS exam and attend continuing education classes every year. Lastly, it is a good sign if they are a member of any professional organization.
Use the internet to check the preparer’s history before you hire their services for your business. A good way of finding reputable preparers is by talking to friends and others around you who have used the services of particular professionals before. Another good way to ensure that the person having access to your information is trustworthy is by checking if they have any disciplinary issues or complaints with Better Business Bureau. If you are considering accountants or attorneys, you can check with your state accountancy board or the bar association of your state for more information.
Availability of the tax preparer is another crucial thing to consider when you are making your decision. Always ensure that the preparer will be accessible year round and not just before April 15th. It should also not be difficult to reach them by phone in case the return needs amendment or when IRS asks you questions regarding your return.
Look for a tax preparer who has a long history of success in the business. A preparer who has in-depth history and experience would have handles at least 100 business returns in a year. Besides, a tax preparer who is experienced will be familiar with the current tax codes so that they can be able to handle your return as required.
You need to inquire what services you will be offered and at what rate. Some preparers offer services such as tax returns, audit services while others will offer guidance on how to prepare the returns on your own. Be vigilant of preparers who base their fee on a proportion of your refund.
Look for preparers who ask to see your receipts and records and ask financial questions. Do not consider a preparer who is looking to e-file your return by using your last pay stub and not your Form W-2.
Information about your income and investment is very sensitive and when it is not well protected, it could lead to fraudulent activities, hence, inquire about their security procedures. Is is also vital if they adhere to IRS guidelines in order to protect the information from falling into the wrong hands.