Tax season is here, and if you haven’t already, it’s time to start thinking about who will prepare your taxes. There are plenty of tax professionals out there who can help with this process but it’s important to choose wisely. Here are three things that you should know before hiring someone:
1. Talk to several people before you hire someone
Hire a Local Tax Professional after consulting with people around you. You should ask your friends and family if they know of any good ones. Also ask for referrals from other people that have used the services of one of these professionals before.
Finally, if you don’t have anyone in mind already, try calling the person’s office and asking about their experience with them (and get some references).
2. The person you hire has to be qualified
Now that you know what to look for in a tax professional, it’s time to look at the qualifications of each candidate. It’s important that your accountant be certified by the IRS and have an advanced degree in accounting or taxation.
He or she should also be licensed as well as a member of a professional organization such as AICPA (American Institute of CPAs), CPA Financial Planning Association or ACA International – Chartered Accountants Foundation (ACCA).
3. How do they work?
You should ask the following questions when hiring a tax professional:
· How do they work?
Do they just file your taxes, or do they also help you with other aspects of preparing them, such as preparing schedules and forms? If a tax preparer has limited experience with your type of taxes, it may mean that he or she will have difficulty filing correctly.
· How much does it cost to hire them?
Tax preparation fees vary widely among individuals and businesses based on their experience level, location, and type of business (e.g., sole proprietorship vs partnership).
There are many online resources that provide useful information on taxes in general and how they apply to you. You can also ask friends or family members who have already been through this process what they used, if anything. This will give you a good idea of what questions need answering first before hiring anyone else to handle your taxes.