Tips on Choosing a Tax Preparer to file taxes

By | February 7, 2015

Many people pay to prepare their tax returns and decide to use accountants or enrolled agents. It is essential that taxpayers have to be careful when choosing a preparer to do your tax return them. Even if someone else prepares your return; you are legally responsible for all the information in the tax return.


Here are 10 IRS tax tips to help you choose a tax preparer and successfully file your 2014 taxes:

  1. Check the preparer’s qualifications. All paid tax preparers are required to have an identification number for tax preparer (PTIN). The IRS will soon offer a new directory of Federal Tax Preparers with Selected Credentials and Qualifications on You can use this tool to help you find a tax preparer requirements you prefer. The directory is a convenient list of searches for some preparers with a valid PTIN 2015. This will include the name, city, state and zip code.
  2.  Checking history of preparer. You can check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to find out if a preparer has a questionable background. Inquire about disciplinary reprimands and license condition preparers registered. For CPAs, contact the State Board of Accountancy. For lawyers, contact the State Bar Association. For registered agents, visit and search for “verify enrolled agent status”
  3. Ask about service fees. Avoid preparers who base their fee on a percentage of your refund or those who say they can obtain larger refunds than others. Always make sure that any refund will be mailed to you or deposited into your bank account. Do not allow your refund deposited in the bank account preparer.
  4. Ask send your return e-file. Make sure your preparer offers IRS e-file. Any paid preparer who prepares and presents more than 10 statements generally must electronically send the statements of its customers. The IRS has processed securely over 1.3 billion tax returns filed electronically.
  5. Make sure the preparer is available. You need to ensure that you can contact the tax preparer after filing your return. That’s true even after April 15th. You may need to contact the trainer if questions arise about your tax return at a later time. 6. Provide tax records. A good tax preparer will ask to see your records and receipts. They will ask questions to report all your income and tax benefits due to them.These may include deductions, tax credits and other. Do not hire a tax preparer who is willing to file your tax return electronically using the last pay stub instead of your W-2 form. This goes against the rules of the IRS e-file.
  6. Never sign a blank tax return. Do not use a tax preparer who asks you to sign a blank tax form.
  7. Check your tax return before signing. Before you sign your tax return, review it carefully. Ask questions if something is not clear. Make sure you are comfortable with the information on the statement before signing it.
  8. Preparer must sign and include their PTIN. Paid preparers must sign forms and include their PTIN as required by law. The preparer must also give a copy of the declaration.
  9. Report to abusive tax preparers to the IRS. You can report abusive preparers and tax fraud suspects taxes to the IRS. Use Form 14157, Complaint: Tax Preparer. If you suspect a preparer introduced or changed his plea without your consent, should also submit Form 14157-A, Affidavit of Misconduct Ready. You can download and print these forms on If you need a form by mail go to to order.

Following these tips when selecting a paid tax preparer will help taxpayers avoid bad preparers and correctly file their taxes.