How to Assign A Better Tax Adviser or An Accountant For Your Business

Tax advisers tend to focus solely on tax planning. They spend significant amounts of time keeping up-to-date with the latest tax legislation and tax cases. Some of which your accountant may not even be aware of

How to Assign A Better Tax Adviser or An Accountant For Your Business

One of our most popular questions at StartupCA, How do I find a successful tax consultant? 'I will mention in the following article 10 of the top questions to make sure you find a knowledgeable, highly qualified tax professional or a professional accountant. 

Do I need an accountant or a tax adviser?

However, it's important to find out why you need them more often than not you need somebody to monitor your finances and support you with your fiscal return? Do you need someone to handle the accounts? Or anyone to give you the advice to save you money legally

What does an accountant do?

Your accountant will handle your finances, work to comply and even prepare taxes.

What is a tax consultant doing?

Tax advisors tend only to concentrate on tax preparation. You will spend a great deal of time updating new tax laws and tax cases and make sure that your clients come up with great ways to lower taxes or reduce them-some of which might not be known to your accountant!

Example of the discrepancy between a tax advisor and an accountant      

Comparing an accounting career with the medical system, you need an accountant similar to a GP; and much of the time you need a GP in routine health, but you need a professional consultant (a tax advisor) if you become critically ill (compare the case with HM Revenue & Customs) or have an operation (tax planning).

My tax advisor/accountant should have what qualifications?

As a customer, you want to be confident that you are behaving in the best interest and in the law of your tax advisor/accountant and it is also vital that your tax advisor or accountant knows what qualifications are, and how they are obtained or whether they are applicable to you. Verify that their credentials cover the field of accounting or taxation in which you need support.

What is your tax consultant/accountant experience?

It's good to know how much experience and their credibility they have if you want a tax advisor or professional accountant

You don't fear knowing how long they have been consulting, where they worked before or if they have ever done any work that you can refer to publicly or in writing? For instance, if you develop a house, for how many people have they given advice for, and are they going to be able to provide references, how many are their current clients within the field in which you are interested

Good tax consultants and accountants will boast of their success, so give them the chance to do so!

How much is charging a "healthy" tax consultant/accountant?

What kind of advice or service you really need depends on. The charges usually reflect the level of experience and expertise of the tax advisor/accountant, and may also be the amount of time they have to spend on their case. Ask even if you have to pay fees for consulting with StartupCA's professionals. 

Some accountants and tax advisors have 'set charges,' so you are aware of what you are paying and what you are receiving, for those forms of tips or assistance. Try, as far as possible, to negotiate a fixed charge, as good tax consultants and accountants would have no fear of operating on this basis. It is much easier than the method of "let it run," but hourly charges are the only realistic way to operate in certain situations such as a fiscal inquiry.


Is it a competent body that must be my tax adviser/accountant?

There are different professional bodies of tax consultants and accountants are a part of them.

Anyone who claims to be able to provide "tax advisory" should be a "Chartered Tax Adviser" (CTA), that means that they are a member, have taken and passed the examinations of the Chartered Taxation Institute. Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA, FCCA) or Chartered Accountant (CA, ACAC, or FCA) would be assigned to qualified accountants.


How much compensation should be paid to a tax consultant/accountant?

If a consultant provides you with incorrect advice or your accountants do not correctly handle your accounts, you might lose a lot of money.

At the outset, it means peace of mind for you to find out what compensation a tax advisor or accountant is covering. Find out if you are covered by records loss, court provision and fees, mistrust or abuse of information in only a few places. Ask who and how much is protected by the assertion.

You will be protected by the protection of your advisor or accountant. You may be alarmed to hear that certain consultants have no compensation cover and are recommended to keep away from those consultants. The laws of their professional institutions include professional compensation protection from chartered and chartered accountants and tax advisors.

How do I get in touch with my tax adviser?

When you call your tax advisor or accountant they are not available every time it is very frustrating.

Find out how and if this is right for you in advance. You will feel more relaxed when you know that the protocol is to send the secretary a note that you are directly communicating with the counsellor, or that you're going to be taken to another counsellor.

How soon can they report to you if you have an "ad hoc" issue and can't contact your consultant or accountant? Also, find out whether they would like to receive emails because this communication form is preferable to you.

You can answer your inquiries and calls within agreed timeframes directly with your appointed tax adviser/accountant.

The growth of online accounts and tax advisors has recently taken place and you may want to consider using such an entity if you do not feel a need of contacting your advisor face to face. With lower open spaces, they also deliver lower fees than traditional companies in the form of offices and conference rooms.


How do tax consultants/accountants stay up to date with changes to tax law?

Tax law is changing all the time. Therefore it is vital that your consultant or accountant keeps all changes up-to-date. For example, on 6 December 2006, there was a pre-budget report which highlighted certain fiscal changes in 2007 and in March 2007 the budget itself.

Tax advisors and accountants will need to comply with the continuing training programmes introduced by their regulatory bodies and keep them aware of the latest updates to their laws as well as the most current tax preparation opportunities, to preserve their qualifications. For example, the mandatory training a Chartered Tax Advisor is expected to complete each year to retain his qualifications is CPD (Continuing Professional Development). They should do a minimum of 90 hours of training annually, divided into at least 20 hours of 'structured' training – i.e., workshops, lectures etc., and 'unstructured' training (for example, reading textbooks and technical articles) for 70 hours.


What if I've got an emergency tax/business?

You know how to contact your tax consultant or accountable, but what if you need urgent fiscal advice and are in an emergency? Make sure that you consent to the way and who you can contact with your preferred tax and accounting professional in an emergency.


How is a tax consultant/accountant available in a crisis?

It is crucial when it comes to the payment for their service to know that you can rely on the tax consultant or accountant. Make sure you can contact them without a formal meeting to organize!


Do tax consultant’s market packages "off-shelf?"

The question to ask your tax adviser/accountant is very important. There are several consultants out there who market and receive large sums of commission from taxes (also known as tax solutions off-shelf).

'Tax systems' come in all kinds of ways-the production of artificial capital losses to offset capital gains is one example (attached by some legislation announced in the Pre-Budget report).

If your counsellor discusses these schemes, be alert, as HM Revenue and customs are becoming difficult to enforce these schemes, and laws have been enacted to compel those who use them to report them to HMRC.


Will the human touch of your tax advisor?

One last yet important point – what's the "chemistry" between you and your consultant? You would find it harder to do business with them if you find them not friendly and sweet. In any professional partnership, mutual trust and respect is an essential component.

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