Friday, October 28, 2011

Back Taxes - What Do You Do?

In one of our current news articles (http://porterfieldcpa.com/dynamicontent.php?id=main&article=973) we addresses the issue of back taxes. More specifically, what you should do when you get a notice from the IRS or a State tax department.

Don't Panic! While no one wants to get a letter from the IRS, it does happen. And just because you receive a notice does not mean that you actually do owe more taxes.

Address the Issue-Review the notice and determine what caused the issue. If you need help, find a qualified CPA. If you need additional help, call the IRS and request additional time to respond. This will not stop the clock on any penalties or interest that may be due, but it will give you the time needed to develop your response. You just need to ask.

Respond-File amended or delinquent tax returns to address the notice. If the notice does result in a balance due, the IRS and State have programs that allow you pay on installment. However, make sure that you can abide by the terms, which will include that you remain in compliance on current returns and taxes.

Again, no one wants to have a situation where they receive a tax notice, but remember to handle it using the steps above and more specifically detailed at www.porterfieldcpa.com.

You can find more tax and accounting insights at www.porterfieldcpa.com.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Technology is Really Changing Our Profession

Everywhere you look today, technology is infiltrating our lives. Does it make things better? I certainly believe and hope that it does.

The accounting profession has been all over the board on technology. I know of a local CPA that still prepares state returns by hand. I assume it is because he is too cheap pay for the additional software license to prepare the returns, but there may be some other reason. I've never asked, just found it interesting that he would prepare federal returns in the software and spend extra time to prepare the state returns by hand.

Getting on with things, there's a lot more technology out there than just tax preparation software. In today's environment of technology, there are all kinds of applications and opportunities for our profession. Here's a link to an article that I wrote for Arkansas Business back in August that talks about just a few of the opportunities. http://www.arkansasbusiness.com/article.aspx?aID=128461.54928.140585&k=CPA

This is a topic that will not be going away. I'm very interested in technology and especially how our profession can make the most of it, so expect to hear a whole lot more on the subject in this blog.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Shoeboxed

I just sat in on a web demo of a service named Shoeboxed (www.shoeboxed.com). Their focus is taking your receipts, scanning them, extracting the data and then putting them in order. It's a solution to the common reference of tax clients bringing their tax "stuff" into the accountant in a shoebox. It's a nice service that ultimately allows the taxpayer to have online access to their records that otherwise would have faded and deteriorated overtime. The extracted data can easily be viewed, searched, filtered and extracted. The service interphases with QuickBooks and Bill.com, just to name a few.

If you are one of those that bring your tax "stuff" into the office in a shoebox, this might be a good service for you.