Have you seen H&R Block commercials recently? They’re getting a lot of attention for being misleading and questioning the professionalism and competency of CPAs, especially from the AICPA, which has been outspoken about the campaign.
To quote the H& R Block campaign:
“Speaking of expertise, did you know many CPAs don’t even specialize in preparing tax returns? Think about that. You may want to ask your CPA’s office a few questions. Who actually prepares your return? Can you sit with them or drop your taxes off as you like? What’s with all this paperwork to fill out every year, and most importantly, will they be able to stand behind the work if the IRS comes knocking? At Block Advisors, we’ve got you covered.”
At Lundy, Shacter, Shulman & Kaplan, P.A., we find this campaign to be deceptive and misleading. CPAs provide an invaluable service to their clients – beyond tax preparation, we provide long-term and short-term tax planning, analysis and support for IRS inquiries and audits. In short, we are a foundation for individuals and businesses to build a strong, secure, financial future.
To be perfectly transparent we want to address the H&R Block accusations one by one.
1. Did you know many CPAs don’t even specialize in preparing tax returns?
Yes, like any profession, there are many CPAs who do not specialize in preparing taxes. Instead they serve as auditors, CFPs, controllers, comptrollers, etc… while they do not specialize in preparing taxes, they serve an important role in protecting and securing the financial health of the organizations they work for.
It would be rare and unusual for a client working with a CPA at a local public accounting office, like Lundy, Shacter, Shulman & Kaplan, P.A., to work with a CPA who is not specialized and skilled at preparing tax returns and tax planning.
2. Who actually prepares your return?
At Lundy, Shacter, Shulman & Kaplan, P.A., the CPA or accountant you meet with prepares your return. Other associates in our office may do some of the initial preparation to ensure a speedy process, but rest assured that the CPA or accountant you meet with will do your final return review.
3. Can you sit with them or drop your taxes off as you like?
Of course! We find this question ridiculous. At Lundy, Shacter, Shulman & Kaplan, P.A., we provide a high level of quality and personalized service. That means accommodating your schedule and needs. Whether you want to come in and sit, or just send us/drop off your documents either way is fine with us. We want to make your tax preparation as easy, comfortable and convenient as possible.
4. What’s with all this paperwork to fill out every year?
We’re not sure what this references. Each year our clients receive a Tax Organizer that can serve as a checklist. Some clients fill it out, others do not. It is not a requirement, simply a planning document that we provide to help you organize your taxes should you care to use it. There is no other paperwork to fill out except for signing your return and e-file authorization.
5. Will they be able to stand behind the work if the IRS comes knocking?
Yes! At Lundy, Shacter, Shulman & Kaplan, P.A., we always stand behind our work and can help represent you in an audit. We maintain all supporting documentation (that’s why we ask for your original documents!) for the information we report. When you give us figures, we always disclose that if audited, you’ll need to provide the supporting documentation for that amount. Either way, in the case of an IRS audit or inquiry we’ll serve as the point of contact for the IRS on your behalf and make sure everything is resolved as quickly as possible.
It is not too late to hire a CPA to review and prepare your taxes for 2015. Lundy, Shacter, Shulman & Kaplan, P.A., has offices in Plantation, FL and Greensboro, NC. We also assist clients outside of those geographic areas. We can handle everything for small businesses, individuals and families. Give us a call today at (954) 452-0100.
You can read more about the feud between AICPA and H&R Block here: http://www.accountingtoday.com/news/tax-practice/aicpa-objects-to-hr-block-ad-disparaging-cpas-77527-1.html