- You should find an experienced tax accountant who specialises in the areas you need help with. If you are a small business then you should find an accountant that has predominantly SME clients.
- Your accountant should know personal and business tax law inside and out. They should be more than a simple tax preparer. You need an accountant willing to get to know YOUR particular needs. Don’t settle for a service that just fills out forms, files your information away and forgets you.
- Ask for referrals and make sure they are genuine.
- Engage your accountant for a trial period. If you are not satisfied with the service you are receiving talk to your accountant about it and provide an opportunity for improvement. If this does not work – find another accountant.
- Be wary of an accountant who promises you big refunds or that says you can deduct everything. You, not the accountant, are ultimately responsible for the information on your tax return. If you have an issue with the ATO the first thing they will do is look into how many accountants you have engaged before you lodged your tax.
- Do not be afraid to shop around or to change accountants if you are not comfortable.
- Look for an accountant who talks to you in layman’s terms on a level you can easily understand. Legal and financial jargon isn’t useful if you don’t understand what they mean. If you can’t understand your accountant’s terminology, it’s a safe bet you won’t understand what’s going on with your company payroll or tax return.
- Be sure that you are getting value for money. Quite often larger accounting firms with premises in a CBD have high overheads, particularly occupancy costs. They may have high profile partners and large public relations expenses, for which you will pay dearly.
Business Services Group and Bentley Partners are both experienced accounting firms and registered businesses on ServiceSeeking.com.au