Small business owners should demonstrate caution when choosing a business accountant.
Working with a business accountant can be a great option for small business owners who cannot afford in-house accountants but also cannot afford to miss out on hidden tax savings. Unfortunately, not all business accountants and CPAs are equally capable of delivering the high-quality audit protection, tax filing and estate planning services their clients deserve. Many lack a thorough understanding of the unique needs of today’s small businesses, and how a variety of personal and professional circumstances can impact tax filing and payroll.
Choose the wrong CPA, and your business could be in a world of trouble. Detailed below are a few ugly truths about hiring a CPA for your small business concerns.
There’s Rarely a Guarantee of Mistake-Free Tax Filing
The right CPA can reduce the risk of your small business suffering an audit due to simple mistakes, but there’s no guarantee your business accountant will do the job right. Accountants are human and just as prone to mistakes as anybody else. The key, then, is to find the accountant least likely to make errors that can lead to audits.
Not All Business Accountants Focus on the Big Picture
Some CPAs boast exceptional skill in individual tax returns or financial planning, but small businesses are a whole other ballgame. When dealing with small business owners, CPAs must take an encompassing approach that accounts for unique issues, such as divorce and estate planning. They must also identify and address potential long-term issues for the small business professionals with whom they work.
Client Education Plays a Huge Role in Business Accounting
Business owners would love to offload all their taxation problems on CPAs and not worry about a thing. But unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Some CPAs are quick to tell business owners that they can employ a hands-off approach to asset protection and tax filing. However, this option carries a great deal of risk. If business owners aren’t thoroughly informed every step of the way, there is a higher risk of compliance issues.
CPAs should inform clients of their best options and how various filing or estate planning measures will impact them both now and on a long-term basis. Ideally, CPAs and their clients will act as partners. Unfortunately, some accountants have no interest in taking on that type of role.
Choosing the Right CPA
Your CPA or business accountant should have a thorough understanding of small business compliance and taxation.
The right team can save your company a lot of time, money and aggravation. So don’t opt for a CPA who lacks small
business expertise. Keep the prospective business accountant’s niche focus in mind, as well as their location and understanding of local taxation or estate planning regulations.
Hiring a skilled CPA can be a great move for your small business, but you need to select the right one. The talented team at Incompass boasts extensive small business experience; our CPAs can help you reduce payroll taxes, protect your assets and develop a prudent estate planning strategy. Contact us at (916) 974-9393 to learn more.