Seasons change, and so do our expectations of people. It seems like this year a lot of people are starting to think that maybe they need a new tax preparer. Many weren’t happy with last year, or they did it themselves on TurboTax or something, and it was an “epic fail,” or maybe it was just too much time and effort. I thought we’d put together a little bullet point list of some of the questions to ask someone if you’re interviewing a CPA tech or a tax preparer.

  • Are you a CPA, or are you an enrolled agent?
  • What are your credentials? 
  • How much do you charge? Folks, there is no more important question than how much your accountant charges and when payment is expected. Spoiler alert: the answer is “It depends…”I know some people who have hired accountants; and then when the bill came, they were in complete shock because they had never discussed it before the work started.
  • How long have you been a paid tax preparer? If there is an audit, or if someone from the IRS contacts you for questions on your return, will this person be able to advocate for you?
  • Are you going to sign the return as a tax preparer? 
  • Is your office open all year? For example, 1099 contractors need someone to help them with estimated tax payments on a quarterly basis.
  • What are some of the documents that you’re going to need from me if I hire you?I know when an accountant has been working with someone for a long time, they give you a tax organizer — but what about first-time clients?
  • Do you keep up-to-date on new tax laws?
  • Do you have a blog? Professionals who blog tend to take pride in their work. Just something I’ve noticed.

If you haven’t already done your taxes, or if you’re scared to, JHA can help — from making your life easier to being a fiduciary for you. Contact us to learn more.