IRS spokesman Bill Brunson says it’s important that you get someone who knows what they are doing to do your taxes.
“More than half of all Iowans will go to a paid preparer, so you want to make sure that you chose wisely in this area, because you are sharing personal financial information with that business that’s going to prepare your tax return,” Brunson says.
He has a few tips for selecting a tax preparer:
“Make sure that you go to one that is ethical, will be around after the filing season in case you get a letter from the IRS in your mailbox,” Brunson says. “Make sure that they’ve gone back to the schoolhouse and learned about the current tax law so they can provide you benefit from it.”
Brunson says you should be concerned if the tax preparer makes big promises without first knowing your situation.
“A good tax preparer is going to ask you a lot of questions and ask you for your receipts and documents. A bad preparer will say to you ‘hey I can get you a large refund’ without running any numbers through the form. Or they might say ‘I am only going to charge you a percentage of what I can get back for you,'” Brunson says. “Those two items are red flags. You don’t want to go to those folks.”
He says there are steps you need to take to protect yourself no matter who you have do your taxes.
“You never want to sign a blank return. You always want to review your return before you sign it. You are legally responsible for that information reported to the IRS, even though someone else prepared it,” Brunson says.
For more information on filing your taxes, go to www.irs.gov.