Filing your own taxes can be difficult and intimidating, and making some errors can put you at risk of being audited. If the filing process overwhelms you, don’t take any risks. Let our experts handle the paperwork for you. Our goal is to make tax season less stressful for our clients. We’ll work hard to maximize your refund in the shortest time period possible.
The Dirty Little Secret of Tax Preparation
EA or CPA?
The current requirements to become a CPA are:
- A bachelor’s degree;
- 24 semester units in accounting-related subjects;
- 24 semester units in business-related subjects;
- 150 semester units (or 225 quarter units) of education;
- Passing the Uniform CPA Exam;
- One year of general accounting experience supervised by a CPA with an active license; and
- Passing an ethics course.
You might be interested to discover that none of those requirements involves education in tax preparation or tax law. This is because being an accountant involves mastery of standard accounting practices and the proper application of accounting theory. Taxes are a function of law; specifically, Title 26 of the US Code of Federal Regulations. Accounting has nothing to do with law and vice versa. So it stands to reason that CPA’s are not required to learn about taxes.
This is not to say that there aren’t CPA’s that are knowledgeable tax preparers. To the contrary, many CPA’s are exceptionally knowledgeable preparers. It is just that the ones that are have made a personal commitment to the massive undertaking of learning the tax code and its application to tax return preparation.
How massive? According to the US Government Printing Office, Title 26 of the US Code of Federal Regulations (that’s the part written by the IRS) is 13,458 pages in total. The full text of Title 26 of the United States Code (the part written by Congress) is a mere 3,387 printed pages, bringing the adjusted gross page count to 16,845. In case you want a copy, you can go to www.gpo.gov and order one, all twenty volumes of it, at the bargain price of $974, shipping included. The part written by Congress is $179 extra.
So, while you may find a CPA that is as good with taxes as they are with accounting, there is no guarantee that he or she is.
An Enrolled Agent (EA) on the other hand, is an expert on tax matters as far as the IRS is concerned. Most people spend hundreds of hours studying the tax code in order to prepare for the brutal 3-part exam the IRS gives for people seeking the EA designation.
According to the IRS, “Enrolled Agents have passed a three-part, comprehensive IRS exam covering individual and business returns. They must adhere to ethical standards and complete 72 hours of continuing education courses every three years. EAs have unlimited practice rights before the IRS, which means they can represent clients for any tax matter.”
All accountants working for our firm have at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and a minimum of 5 years of experience before being considered for employment. And the accountants that prepare your return also have an EA designation. This designation guarantees that you have someone proven to be knowledgeable specifically in the science of tax preparation AND that will stand with you before the IRS should they question any information contained in your return.
So, no matter what your tax circumstances are, you can trust the experts at LIV Bookkeeping, LLC to provide accurate, knowledgeable tax preparation and advice, and to be there with you should the IRS ever come knocking.
Pain Free Tax Prep
Thanks to faxes, scanners, and email, gone are the days when you have to throw all your tax forms and receipts into a box and fight traffic across town to get your tax return done. In fact, very few of our clients feel the need to visit our office any more. Today, our clients email their documents or upload them to our secure servers. The ones that don’t want to hassle with converting all those receipts into something they can email simply stick them all in a big envelope and mail them to us. We then convert everything into digital format and mail them back. A few days later your return is emailed to you in a password-protected pdf format. Upon your approval, the return is filed electronically and the email confirming that the IRS has accepted your return is forwarded to you for your records. Imagine… your taxes prepared and filed by a certified expert without you ever leaving the comfort of your home or office!!
That’s the LIV Bookkeeping difference!
Click here to download a copy of our Client Tax Organizer. This will give us all the information we need to get started preparing your return.
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