Most people know what they want when they are looking for someone to help them. However, in the case of filing a tax return, most people just assume all EA’s, Lawyers, CPA’s or those tax preparers from some fast food chain like tax prep service are about the same. But just like most other professional services, nothing could be further from the truth. Each tax professional has certain qualifications and expertise in certain areas. Again, people who help taxpayers file taxes for a living have their own strengths and weaknesses.

But here is the rub:

Too many people don’t match up what they need/want with the strengths of their paid tax professional.

If you fall into this category, listen closely.

First, let’s be clear. What do you want from a tax preparer?

From my experience, here are the most common “wants” for the regular income taxpayers:

  1. You want an accurately filed tax return.
  2. You want the tax filing process broken down into layman’s terms.
  3. You don’t want to hear about someone else’s tax filing scenario.
    1. No, you are just interested in your own tax situation — explained so you can understand, and once you’ve “got it”,
  4. You want the tax preparer to give you a heads up about some possibilities in the future to save even more money or qualify for other deductions that would legally add more money to your pocket at tax time.
  5. You want assurances everything your tax preparer is doing for you is valid and correct, so a guarantee(s) is essential to the process. And of course,
  6. You want to “close the book” on this year’s tax filing in a reasonable amount of time.

No dragging this process out for many days or weeks.

You want to know what’s going on with your taxes in a day or two, gather more info (if needed) which might reduce your tax burden and/or increase the amount of refund money owed you – and then file your taxes so you can be done with it!

Oh, and if you ARE getting a refund, you want a tax professional/firm who can get you the most money back the fastest, with the most electronic filing options available.

It is my opinion Rapid refunds are false and more trouble that they are worth-stay away

Bottom line:

You want accuracy, you want clarity, you want to be aware of beneficial tax options, you want peace of mind, you want an efficient use of your time, you want your refund money back in your hands fast, and at the end of the day, you want to KNOW you got the most money back, AND you know the IRS will stay off your back so you can sleep like a baby at night! If the tax professional you are talking to (or the tax practitioner you currently use) can’t do what you want, don’t give him/her your business.

Go to someone who will be on your side, looking out for your interests and not treating you like just another number.