Finding the Right Tax Preparer

The Official Moon Base Party of the United States of America is not all politics 24/7.  We are a party of the people.  The Moon Base Party is also here to help you with your everyday needs.  We would like to take a few minutes to help you find the right tax preparer.

The American tax code is complicated and filing taxes can be intimidating.  Many people choose to have a tax professional prepare and file their taxes.  Finding the right tax preparer can make the difference between getting the proper refund and getting audited.  With that in mind, here are some tips to help you find the right tax professional.

  • Just like you want a licensed barber to cut your hair, you should get a licensed tax professional to file your taxes.  Many people use a tax preparation service such as H&R Block or Jackson Hewitt.  These business are great places to find licensed tax professionals.
  • As it turns out, if you can read a prompt on a computer, you can work at H&R Block or Jackson Hewitt.
  • Many attorneys and certified public accounts are willing to file your taxes.  You can find an independent tax preparer in your area just be looking in the phone book!
  • If you threw out your copy of the phone book as soon as it arrived in the mail, then you can also use your favorite Internet search engine to find local tax preparers.
  • Check your tax preparer’s prior history.  Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if others have filed a complaint against him.  Ask to see the passing score on his competency test.  See if he is in a sex offender database.  Administer a breathalyzer test or acquire a urine sample if needed.
  • Your tax preparer’s should have a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN).  Ask to see his PTIN badge.  The badge should be plated in real brass.  Make sure the badge is not made of chocolate.  If you are still not sure, ask to scan the PTIN barcode on his left thigh.
  • Ask about fees.  Tax preparers often charge fees for their time and services.  These fees should amount to no more than $20.  Should the tax preparer try to charge you more than this, then the amount is clearly unreasonable and you should take your business elsewhere.
  • Welcome to the 21st century!  These days many people are choosing to file their taxes electronically over the Internet using tax preparation software.
  • While it might make sense to file your taxes through a government website (such as the IRS website), no such options currently exist in the United States.  This is mostly due to lobbying from the tax preparation services such as Intuit.  Do not worry.  Many private companies (such as Intuit) offer tax preparation software which only charge a small additional fee to file your taxes online.
  • While using tax preparation software, you must answer all questions honestly and to the best of your ability.  Should you become confused by a question, you can search for the answer on the Internet.  Be aware that the members of your Gaia Online forum are not tax experts and are unlikely to provide credible answers to your concerns.
  • Finding the right tax preparer is not easily.  If you fall down, get back up and try again!
  • Tax preparers need to see your W2’s, tax credits, or other important tax information.  You should be distrusting of anyone who claims they can generate all of this information from your last pay stub and your credit card information.
  • You should never file your taxes with a man named “Charmz” who operates out of a station-wagon parked in front of a coffee shop with an open Wi-Fi connection.  It is very unlikely this individual will have a valid PTIN badge.
  • Should you buy and consume mushrooms from Charmz, keep in mind you are not permitted to sign any legal documents while under the influence of a controlled substance.  You will need to wait until the trees stop talking to you before continuing to find a tax professional.
  • Make sure your tax preparer is not an elk.  Elks posing as tax preparers is a growing trend in the Northwest.  You are only allowed to shoot the elk if it is hunting season.  It is a good idea to contact your local game warden before preparing your taxes in case this situation arises.
  • It is okay to cry.  Real men cry too.
  • You cannot go back into H&R Block now.  You stormed out of there when you found out they wanted to charge you $170 for 15 minutes of feeding your answers into an online form.  Dude, you made a scene.  I am pretty sure they will call the cops if they see your car in the parking lot.
  • You used to be a rebel, a free spirit, a wild and independent free-thinker.  Now look at you.  Paying taxes to the man.  Fuck that!  Don’t file your taxes this year!
  • What if the IRS finds out you didn’t file your taxes?  Look at you.  You would not make it five minutes in prison.  Head back to H&R Block and beg for their forgiveness.
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