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Gabriel Lalonde
February 24, 2021

3 Tips for Choosing the Best Tax Preparer

Can you guess which three letters strike fear in the hearts of most Canadians? CRA!

Yes, many people are afraid of the Canada Revenue Agency. Maybe you are, too. Our tax rules can be hard to understand! That’s why people choose to hire a professional to file their income taxes. Of course, you don’t need to be a math whiz to do your own taxes. What you DO need to know is what you can deduct — and how to do it without triggering an audit.

And so, many people outsource their tax preparation to a specialist.

And once people start working with a preparer, they tend to feel stuck with them for the long haul.

Have you ever felt this way?

Sure, your preparer may do a fine job of filing your return … But do you trust them? Do you like them?

If not, I have three tips for finding the best tax preparer for your family.

  • Know their credentials. The scary thing is that anyone can call themselves a tax preparer. But they don’t answer to any professional organization. They also can’t represent their clients in front of the CRA.

Compare that to Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) that must pass a tough exam and work many hours to earn their licenses. They must continue their education every year in order to keep those licenses. These professionals may represent you in front of the CRA during audits and appeals.

  • Understand which type of preparer is best for your situation. CPAs can help you with complicated tax matters. If your tax situation is simple and straightforward, an unlicensed preparer may do… But remember that you still have to do your due diligence when choosing a professional who will know all kinds of private information about your family!
  • Check into costs. Not surprisingly, you’ll pay more for expertise and credentials. The services of a CPA will likely cost more than a non-credentialed preparer.

Who should consider using a credentialed tax professional? Business owners, self-employed people, those who own rental properties, and high earners — for starters.

Still don’t know what kind of tax preparer is best for you — or if you can handle it yourself? Our team at MDL Financial Group has partnered with several CPAs who are here to help you figure it out. Give us a call!

Gab

About Gabriel Lalonde, CFEI

When Gabriel is not crunching numbers, you can find him accompanied by his beautiful wife Ana and son Théo, either on the golf course in the summer or the ski slopes in the winter. His dream has always been to take over the family business as he saw first hand how much impact his father had on shaping peoples lives and creating long lasting legacies. Gabriel has a true passion for financial literacy and he believes everyone should have access to solid financial education.

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