Not everyone needs a specialist to help with their tax filings. For most people, especially those who have only one job, or a simple business, there are easy to use tax software available on the market. For those with a relatively straight forward tax filing, an accountant, whether in-house or a professional can help with the tax filing without any problems with the IRS. There are only a few individuals, and companies which really need a tax professional or an Enrolled Agent. When you do need help with tax preparation in Mason, here are a few things to consider:
1. Has the EA or tax accountant worked with the IRS? There are advantages to a tax professional who was formerly with the IRS doing taxes. He would know deductions which might cause red flags. He would also be in a position to advice regarding interpretation of pertinent laws, not just in theory but also in practice.
2. What companies or industries has the tax accountant worked before? There are some industries which need a specialist. The restaurant business for example, or an agricultural concern, or even one where the revenues are from abroad. A tax accountant who has not worked with these industries would be hard pressed to keep up with the local and federal laws and regulations. The names of former clients can also help the client to decide whether to retain the tax accountant.
3. Availability. It is easy to be complacent and be available only during tax season. The truth is, business decisions can sometimes hinge on tax laws. Having a tax accountant can give the business owner ideas on the best way to run a business, or optimize the revenue stream. Relevant advice is always welcome.
4. Services billing. Like other consultants on retainer, there are tax accountants who work on a flat rate basis, and there are those who work on billable hours. Although some would say that this is a secondary consideration, the business owner has to understand beforehand the billing cycle, in order to budget the services as an expense. Additionally, it may be more cost-effective to choose one over the other type of billing.
5. Having multiple business concerns. A businessman does not need to be a millionaire to have multiple business entities. It is easy enough to establish a limited partnership, as well as a full-fledged corporation. The tax accountant is there to help ensure that fund transfers all follow the rules and that he can keep track of all the companies being managed.
6. The medical expense reimbursement plan. It the accountant does not know how to handle this, find a different consultant. This is one very important way to keep yourself and your family covered for medical expenses, at the same time keeps it under company expenses.
7. Frequency of consultations. Consultations and meetings should occur at least once a month, or more frequently. The question goes back to the time allotted by the consultant. There should be as much communication as is possible. This will help stave off problems later during tax season.