Small Business Accounting & Tax Preparation FAQ’s
What are the benefits of asking you to do my tax return preparation instead of doing it myself via a computer software program?
Though do-it-yourself computer software might seem to save you on the expense of preparing your tax returns, you stand a better chance of getting more favorable results by enlisting the help of a professional who is knowledgeable about all tax-related details and the deductions that can lessen your tax obligation.
Can you take care of filing my returns electronically or will I need to send the paperwork?
Yes, we will electronically file your Federal, State and Local tax returns for you after we’ve gathered all of your information, inputted the data into the required forms, reviewed everything for accuracy, and received your approval to proceed. Note that if additional tax is due, we will tell you the amount and give you instructions for sending it to the appropriate agencies.
How far in advance should I set up my appointment to have my tax returns prepared?
Though it might be toward the end of January before you receive all your tax- related forms from your employer, mortgage lender, bank, etc., we recommend that you call us in December or early January to schedule an appointment well before the April 15 filing deadline.
What paperwork should I bring to my appointment?
For income tax preparation, please bring all of the following if relevant to you. Note that prior to your appointment, we’ll provide you with specific information about the paperwork and records you’ll need.
- W-2 forms from your employer(s)
- 1099-INT (interest) and 1099-DIV (dividends) forms
- 1099-MISC forms (if self-employed), 1099-B forms (for brokerage trades in stocks and bonds)
- K-1 forms (if profits from a small business, partnership or trust)
- 1099-SSA form (if you received Social Security payments)
- Receipts, canceled checks or spreadsheets for any tax-deductible expenses.
(Examples include: medical expenses, real estate taxes, charitable contributions, self-employment and business expenses, childcare costs, moving expenses, college expenses, contributions to your IRA, etc.)
- 1098 form (if you paid interest on a mortgage)
- 1098-E (if you paid interest on a student loan)
- If you made estimated tax payments throughout the year, bring a summary of those payments and your canceled checks.
Is it possible to extend the due date for filing my taxes?
personal and business income tax, there are forms that you can submit to request more time to file your returns. Note that filing extensions do not extend the time you have to pay your tax liability.
If I forget to bring any forms or important information to my appointment, do I have to set up an additional appointment?
Generally, no. If you’ve forgotten to bring some key information with you, you can fax it, scan and email it, mail it, or drop it off at our office after your appointment. Of course, the sooner the better! We will then include it as we finish preparing your return.
How long do I need to keep all of my tax-related records?
Generally, at the Federal level, individuals should retain personal tax records for at least 3 years after the filing date. For businesses, the minimum recommendation is 7 years. Be aware that states may have different requirements – and some may exceed the Federal rules. We recommend talking with one of our accounting professionals for guidance, because specific situations could require longer periods of records retention.