Falling behind tax filing deadlines is all too common with entrepreneurs. If you’ve been running your business for some time, perhaps you’ve already paid a penalty fee or two as a result of late filing. Or maybe you’re all too familiar with incorrect tax filing. An excellent solution to these problems is finding the right tax professional for your business.
Remember, taxation is a complex field and there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to your unique needs. Therefore, it’s critical to find a professional who’s perfectly suitable for your business. Below are some tips you can apply in your search.
1. Identify The Services You Need
Not every certified public accountant (CPA) can manage taxes expertly. Most of them focus on audits. And even those who deal with taxes specialize along unique lines, such as real estate returns.
If you’re looking to hire a tax preparer for your business, be sure you know exactly what they’ll be doing for you. This goes a long way to matching you with a tax professional that’s perfectly conversant with filing taxes for the kind of business you run.
Alternatively, you could delegate the filing duties to a tax services company. The advantage is that they usually comprise dozens of tax experts, meaning they can handle virtually all tax issues. If this interests you, click here for tax services in Philadelphia.
2. Tap Into Your Network For Referrals
Chances are you’ve got friends, colleagues, or family conversing with tax preparers in the market. This is your network, and you can contact them for referrals or guidance on where to hire from. It’s easier to work with someone recommended since you’ll trust them.
Meanwhile, the web is part of your network too. And although you may be wary of not getting what you want, it’s the next best thing. Search online for local CPA associations and see what they offer. Particularly, aim for those with an exceptional online reputation.
3. Perform Interviews
Applications and referrals aren’t enough for your business to employ a tax professional. You need to interview every shortlisted candidate to check essential qualities you can’t find on paper. During the interview, gauge their interpersonal and intrapersonal skills.
Remember, the person will become part of your business finance team. Hence, ask questions that can help you decide on an excellent hire to make, like:
- What’s their communication preference?
- Where do they stay?
- What’s their current and projected workload?
- What’s their area of specialization regarding taxes?
Interviews will also help you assess whether you like the person. Good workplace chemistry goes a long way in ensuring business efficiency and that you don’t deal with disputes constantly. If the recruiting process is tedious and you don’t have time, consider outsourcing to agencies specializing in recruitment and hiring.
4. Confirm Credentials
Filing taxes with the internal revenue service (IRS) can be done by any person who has a preparer tax identification number (PTIN). But this isn’t a good enough baseline for a good tax professional for your business needs.
You need to go further into their academic and professional credentials. It’s best to work with registered agents, a tax attorney, or a CPA-qualified preparer. These credentials differentiate general tax preparers from seasoned professionals who can handle complex tax procedures.
Significantly, a qualified person knows your tax area rules in and out and can easily get your business out of any tax hitches. Credentials also provide you with security and ensure you don’t get scammed.
5. Have A Budget
Hiring an employee comes with a cost. Tax preparers have varying fees depending on a number of factors. First is the location of your business. Expensive cities like New York and San Francisco will definitely attract higher fees, and vice versa is true for cheaper ones like Lexington and Montgomery.
Secondly, a tax professional with experience spanning decades is likely to charge more than a fresh graduate. Also, tax experts can charge based on the complexity of the filing and others by the hour. Therefore, make a point of asking about their prices upfront and ensure your budget matches.
6. Check The Business Calendar
Being in sync with each other’s calendars ensures that your business can get the requisite tax services easily and on time. It’ll also ensure your returns are correct and made on time with no last-minute rushes. Therefore, if your calendar doesn’t fit with the tax professionals’ schedule, consider another person or have them create a window for your business.
Having the right tax professional is a critical step towards successfully managing your business. So, embark on the selection process following the above tips.
Remember, filing taxes is mandated by the law, and failure to comply could result in criminal charges with the IRS. For this reason, hire one at your earliest convenience. After all, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.