How to avoid bad Tax preparers


It is the end of the first quarter of 2013 and it is time to file your tax return. Many of us look for some help to file our returns and the best possible solution is to hire a professional tax preparer. But, on this point, the IRS is very clear. Even if you hire a tax preparer and the tax preparer endorses the return by signing on it, if there are issues with the return, New York Tax Return you as the tax payer are legally responsible for the return. This may be a bit worrisome and so you have to be careful when you choose a tax preparer and avoid bad tax preparers.


There may be many tax preparers who will talk big and promise you the world in terms of savings on tax, but that is not what you want. What you want to look for , is  someone who files a correct return and is ready to stand by the return in case of an IRS audit.


To avoid bad tax preparers you can carry out some simple investigations of your own –

  1. Ensure that the tax preparers has a (PTIN) Preparer  Tax Identification Number issued by the IRS. The preparer should be ready to endorse the return with his or her PTIN and signature.
  2. Find out the preparer’s qualifications and experience along with expertise.
  3. Find out if there are any frauds registered against him. You can get this information from the IRS or state accountancy board or accountancy bar associations.
  4. Ensure that he or she does not ask you to sign on blank or incomplete returns.
  5. If a refund is due to you, see to it that the preparer is asking for your details and not siphoning the money.
  6. Check the fees that are being demanded for the services that are being offered by the preparer.
  7. The preparer should not guarantee or offer unimaginable refunds without even knowing your financial details.
  8. The preparer should be available to discuss and solve your matters with you and help you through the entire return filing process and later if required.
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Be aware that you are going to share your financial details as well as details like your social security number and details about your family and dependents with your tax preparer. So, do not engage with a tax preparer unless you are confident of his or her abilities and professionalism. they would be someone known to you or your friends or colleagues.

The last date  for payment of taxes every year is in the first quarter of the year. April 17, 2013 is the deadline to file tax returns for everyone.  If you still find this confusing, you can hire a professional tax preparer. Then it is just a matter of handing over your documents, receipts and forms and a few meetings and your return will get done for you to review, endorse and file.

Considering the above, you may be better off with hiring a professional tax preparer and getting your return prepared and filed from by an expert tax preparer.


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