Why Work With A CPA? When Other Tax Preparers are Less Expensive?
Certified Public Accountants have a credential that proves they have what it takes.
With very few exceptions, CPAs are required to have a degree in accounting, pass the CPA exam, attain a minimum level of experience and obtain a license from their state Board of Accountancy.
The CPA Exam has four sections: auditing and attestation, business environment and concepts, financial accounting and reporting, and regulation. The exam is 14 hours long. It is harder than the bar exam – I know, I’ve passed both.
CPAs are required to adhere to the accounting profession’s code of conduct and their own enforceable (AICPA – American Institute of Certified Public Accountants) ethical standards.
In order to maintain the CPA credential, CPAs are required to complete approximately 40 hours of continuing professional education each year to stay on top of new developments in the profession and new tax laws and regulations. State Boards of Accountancy make sure all licensed CPAs meet their education requirements as a condition of license renewal.
Certified Public Accountants have a breadth of knowledge and experience and often have additional credentials supporting their specialization. For example, in addition to being a CPA, I am also an attorney, licensed by the State of Minnesota to practice law, and a Certified Forensic Accountant with specialized education and experience in forensic accounting. Because of this breadth of knowledge (in my case attained through over 30 years of experience) CPAs are able to provide a broad array of services beyond tax return preparation. Filling in the forms is not all that difficult – knowing what to do when the IRS comes around, and knowing how to keep the IRS away only comes with experience. CPAs have always been the best resource for tax preparation and tax advice.
Mark S Gleason CPA