There are many benefits to filing your taxes through a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), compared to completing your tax filings on your own or through an automated system. In addition to the huge amounts of time an accountant will save you, working with a CPA helps insure that you will get as many deductions as possible, and that your taxes fill be filed accurately. But before you head to a tax professional in Rohnert Park, make sure that you do your part and collect the information below to hand off to your CPA.
Your Personal Information
While it may seem like common sense to collect your basic personal information in one place and provide it to your accountant, if you forget this step now it will only slow down your CPA. Make sure to have your full legal name, social security number, address, birth date, and other basic identifying information in one place.
Your Income Related Documentation
Whatever you do for work, you will need to pass information regarding your earnings off to your CPA. If your employer had you fill out a w-2 or w-4, bring that to your accountant. If you are an independent contractor, don’t forget your 1099. Do a bit of research, and make sure that you hand off all of your income related documentation to your accountant in one easy to interpret bundle.
Your Expenses Related Documentation
Especially if you are a freelancer or small business owner, you have probably been diligently collecting receipts all year, building evidence of your expenses to insure that you receive the biggest deductions that you can. Even if you aren’t a business owner, you may qualify for big deductions if you have done home improvements for example, or paid off college loan interest. Check in with your accountant quickly about what deductions you may qualify for, and then get all of your expense related documents in once place. And don’t hand your CPA a bundle of unsorted receipts; take the bit of time necessary to label and sort everything so your accountant can accurately find you deductions.
The Bottom Line:
Before utilizing a CPA to help you file taxes, you will need to do a bit of preparation. Make sure that at the very least, you have compiled your personal information, income related documentation, and expense related documentation into easy and manageable packages to deliver to your accountant, and check with your CPA about anything else you may need to prepare.