Based on your desires and aspirations, this is an independent choice. But to guide you through the process, here is a quick checklist.Do you want to learn more? Visit website .
Assess The Requirements.
- If computing your tax obligations at the end of the year requires only basic information-employment income reported on W-2s, mortgage interest and real estate taxes-and you are not looking for planning and/or financial guidance, then a national tax firm such as H&R Block or Jackson Hewlett may fit the bill.
These people are doing a decent job with certain simple scenarios. Companies like these employ part-time staff with good basic training. But most don’t have the in-depth expertise required to allow more nuanced returns. And if you think you’re going to need tax counsel after April 15th, don’t look for your preparer, as these companies don’t typically keep their part-time employees on after tax season. While somebody can answer your question at their head office, they won’t know you or your situation personally.
These companies generally hire seasonal tax preparers, not necessarily professionals. As a member of one of the national firms, however, these tax preparers have the advantage of supervising and accessing the more knowledgeable professionals in the firm.
You may want to stay away from the several local part-time shops opening throughout the season. These preparers may not have any professional oversight or accounting experience. The State of Florida has no requirement to have any type of tax experience or accounting knowledge from a paid tax preparer. State and local authorities are not testing the tax preparers.
- You are self-employed? If you have the revenue from savings, own rental property? Are you member of a joint company, holding shares of the S-corporation? Do you have any capital gains or losses? Did you take a pension or an annuity with you? Got you international income? Do you have a risk in injury, or investment expenses? Will your return show more than just wages, interest on mortgages and real estate taxes? Do you want the Tax Planning and financial guidance to help? You should look at a tax professional then.
Choosing a Specialist.
There are three types of professional tax officer. The definitions below will help you find out which form is better for you.
- Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) are licensed by the accounting board of the state of Florida. They are tested on accounting , auditing, and tax knowledge and must meet the requirements set by the state board for continuing education. They can represent you before the Internal Revenue Service and can only practice in the states where they hold licenses.
- You may be represented by lawyers before the Internal Revenue Service, but not all lawyers have the extensive knowledge necessary to prepare a complex return. However, if you have a fraud problem, or a criminal matter, this might be the best place to start. Look for a Board Certified Tax Attorney when seeking an attorney to help you in tax matters. These lawyers have the knowledge and experience to help you deal with complex matters.
- Enrolled Agents (EAs) are professionals who have proven their technical competence in the tax field. Enrolled agents are able to represent taxpayers before all Internal Revenue Service administrative levels. Of the three types of professionals, only Enrolled Agents are required to demonstrate their expertise in tax matters to the IRS before representing a taxpayer before the IRS. Unlike lawyers and CPAs who may or may not choose to specialize in taxes, all EAs are tax-specialist.