Things to look out for when choosing a tax preparer

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In General

Personal income taxes are due this year by April 30th as with all other years. There are endless advertisements about them for a variety of different tax preparers. Before you choose a tax preparer, there are often some find print and also other obscure conditions you should know about.

Below we list some things you should look out for before choosing one:

  1. Many tax preparers train their employees with classroom training that lasts as little as a month an a half. Some may have longer training, some might be less. This does not necessarily prepare an individual to deal with all the different types of taxes.
  2. Many tax returns are not screened or reviewed by a senior before being handed back to you. The threshold for a quick review is if a customer is receiving a large refund. This threshold can be over several thousand dollars and it means that items may be missed in your tax return.
  3. Preparers are often paid minimum wage plus very small commissions. The faster they finish a return and go on to the next, the more money they make. Again, this is another place where items may be missed or done incorrectly.
  4. Many tax preparers advertise a basic rate, but then charge more for each and every slip. The additional slips can add up to quite a bit. Beware the low price because there may be additional charges depending on your return.
  5. Cash back options for refunds, while nice for the immediate cash, could entail a very high fee based on a percentage of your refund

Please note, we’re not suggesting you shouldn’t use the many different tax preparers out there. They are likely just fine. We want to make sure you’re aware of the different practices out there. The ultimate responsibility for making sure your taxes are done always lies with you, the taxpayer.

If you have questions or concerns about preparing your taxes, please don’t hesitate to contact your accountant or talk to us at info@apbs.ca or (416) 495-­1098.

The blogs posted on our website provide information of a general nature. These posts should not be considered specific advice; as each reader's personal financial situation is unique and fact specific. Please contact a professional advisor prior to implementing or acting upon any of the information contained in one of the blogs.

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