Using a Tax Professional to Prepare Your Taxes

If you choose someone who is not because you prepare your tax return, choose that preparer wisely. By law, the paid tax preparer who is primarily responsible for the fundamental accuracy of statement is the requirement to sign the return and include the identification number tax preparer (PTIN) in the statement.


What is importance of a PTIN?

Although the tax preparer signs the return, you are solely responsible for the accuracy of each item on your return. A person who prepares tax returns for other people must have a good understanding of tax matters. Currently, they require all paid tax preparers who have a tax PTIN . You can ask their friends, coworkers or employer assistance in selecting a tax preparer is competent.


Appointing a Third Party to File Taxes

Choose a tax preparer that you can call in case the IRS audit your return and have questions regarding the preparation thereof. The box given to the appointment of a third party in the Form 1040, the Form 1040A and Form 1040EZ allows you to designate your tax preparer or other third party paid to speak to the IRS concerning the preparation of his declaration, payment and refund issues and mathematical errors in the statement. The box designated for the approval of a third party gives the designated authority to receive and consider a statement and information about the same for a period of one year from the due date of the return (excluding extensions) person. Refer to Topic 312 for information on how to delegate authority to a third party to receive and consider a statement and information about it, usually using Form 8821 , Tax Information Authorization.


Steps to take to find a tax preparer

Most return preparers are professional, honest and provide excellent service to their customers.However, there are unscrupulous tax preparers who file false tax returns, causing considerable legal and financial damages to their customers.


Use the following guidelines to help you choose a tax preparer:

  • Be wary of tax preparers who claim they can obtain larger refunds than others.
  • Avoid tax preparers who set their fees based on a percentage of the refund amount.
  • Be sure to use a preparer who has an identification number tax preparer ( PTIN ). Preparers of tax paid must have an identification number tax preparer to prepare the statement in its entirety, or a substantial part of it.
  • Use a tax professional with good reputation to provide your PTIN, sign the tax return and that will provide you with a copy of the declaration (as required).
  • Consider whether the individual or firm will be operating for months or years after the statement to answer questions about the preparation of the tax return is submitted.
  • Check the accreditation of the person. Only attorneys, certified public accountants (CPAs) and enrolled agents can represent taxpayers before the IRS in all matters including audits, collections and appeals. Other tax return preparers may only represent taxpayers for audits of returns they prepared themselves.

Using a Tax Professional to Prepare Your Taxes

To find more information about choosing a tax return preparer and avoiding fraud, see Tax Tip 2013-07 (Tax Tip 2013-07) on the website. Also, to see the additional requirements for tax preparers, check our web site the new requirements of PTIN for Tax Return Preparers.