IRS Offers Tips on Choosing a Tax Preparer

Published: 2/9/2017 7:25:18 AM

"Choose your tax return preparer carefully because you entrust them with your private financial information that needs to be protected," said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. "Most preparers provide high-quality service but we run across cases each year where unscrupulous preparers steal from their clients and misfile their taxes."

Choosing Return Preparers Carefully

It is important to choose carefully when hiring an individual or firm to prepare a tax return. Well-intentioned taxpayers can be misled by preparers who don’t understand taxes or who mislead people into taking credits or deductions they aren’t entitled to in order to increase their fee. Every year, these types of tax preparers face everything from penalties to jail time for defrauding their clients.

Here are a few tips when choosing a tax preparer:

  • Ask if the preparer has an IRS Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). Paid tax return preparers are required to register with the IRS, have a PTIN and include it on tax returns.
  • Inquire whether the tax return preparer has a professional credential (enrolled agent, certified public accountant {CPA} or attorney), belongs to a professional organization or attends continuing education classes. A number of tax law changes can be complex. A competent tax professional needs to be up-to-date in these matters. Tax return preparers aren’t required to have a professional credential. The IRS website has more information regarding the national tax professional organizations.
  • Check the preparer’s qualifications. Use the IRS Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications. This tool can help locate a tax return preparer with the preferred qualifications.

  • What's the Bottom Line: Go with a CPA you can count on, one that will guarantee results and good faith and who has the reputation to back it up! "For years we have guided clients through the financial and tax complexities of the law, and every time our clients are highly satisfied with the results. We have built our entire business through referrals, we don't loose clients, we always deliver the highest value, and we guarantee your satisfaction." - Salem, Managing Partner

    Make an appointment with Complete Financial Services today! "We're not just your accountants, we're your trusted advisors."

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