Have you run into situations where you were unsure whether you should contact your Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or not? Typically, an email or call to your CPA can only be a benefit to you – they can be a wealth of information and answer simple questions you might have. Setting up a meeting might be good to discuss further concerns to ensure that you’re equipped to handle things. Don’t feel that your CPA is inaccessible – they’re an asset in your corner for you and your business and are there to help you.

Not Just for Tax Season

We often think of our CPAs as a person to contact only during tax season or leading up to audits from the IRS. However, your CPA can be a great resource all year round and in a range of specific circumstances.

Here are some examples:

  • Starting your business: When starting your business, a CPA can lend guidance as you decide on what business entity may be the best fit, what licenses you may need to operate, and be a sounding board to determine if your business is a business or hobby.
  • Owning investment property: If you own investment property, it could have an impact on your individual returns. Your CPA can help you understand the implications of those properties and how to properly report them on your tax returns.
  • Your income is more than $200,000 annually: While you should be chatting with your CPA when large changes in your income occur, notifying them if you expect your income to be more than $200,000 for a year is important. While it may not seem fair, the higher income you earn, the higher likelihood of the IRS auditing you to ensure that things are above board.
  • When setting up your administrative process: From payroll to ensuring you’re charging sales tax correctly, your CPA can provide guidance and recommendations. They can also be a resource after you’ve established your business if you need help with payroll or other financial concerns.
  • When you acquire, merge, sell or close your business: When making changes to your business chatting with a CPA can help you prepare for the financial effects that could come. They can also help you analyze the records and financials of a business you’re considering merging with or purchasing.
  • Taking out business loans: If you’re considering taking out a loan for your business, your CPA can help you decide if financing currently fits your long-range goals. Plus, they can refer you to good financial planners and attorneys to also aid you in navigating the process.

Urgent Reasons to Reach Out

You could be facing an IRS audit, just lost a major client, or had some large changes in your family’s income due to a loss. These and more could have a big impact on your financial situation – and chatting with your CPA to understand how it could affect you from a tax standpoint could be an asset. Plus, when it comes to IRS audits specifically – the more prepared you can be the better. Your CPA can work with you to ensure the questions from the IRS are answered. If it’s a larger audit, your CPA can be with you during the process. The sooner you let your CPA know about an audit, the better they can prepare.

Tax Season

As always, your CPA and their team will be your best asset during tax season. They can prepare and file your return(s), and work with you to plan for future tax liability. Since CPAs maintain continuing education, they can assist you in understanding changes in tax laws and help you stay in compliance. They can also help you understand what expenses are deductible and how to best manage your business’ tax needs as they change over time.

Don’t Rush Yourself

Give both yourself and your CPA time to get things done – especially when it comes to your personal and business tax returns. Gather all your documents and send it to your preparer as early as you can. If you have questions that pertain to your taxes, reach out early, before tax season if you can. Between the first of the year and April 15th is the busiest season for CPAs and their staff – so trying to have a meeting mid-March about something non-urgent is likely not going to be successful for you or your CPA. Set meetings up outside of tax season for non-tax related questions and concerns. Once we get through the busy season, we’d be happy to help answer them for you.

Want to Know More?

In the end it’s all about your specific needs and having great communication with your CPA. Maybe you meet quarterly with them to ensure your business finances are in check and things are ready for tax season. Maybe you meet more often, or seek specific advice when situations pop up. While we can provide insights in this blog post to help you move in the right direction, always check in with your CPA to ensure that you have good communication with them for what you need. We’re here to help you and to do that we need to stay in touch to know what’s going on to understand the whole picture. You can always reach out to our experienced LeMay & Company (located in Springfield, VA) team by phone at (703) 912-7862, email, or set up a meeting with one of our staff to discuss your concerns.