Tax Guru – Ker$tetter Letter

Helping real people win the tax game.

Archive for February 28th, 2008

Rebate Worksheet

Posted by taxguru on February 28, 2008

As I’ve mentioned on several occasions, I have been buying the All States and Deluxe editions of The TaxBook every year since they have been produced. I have also been purchasing the CD-ROM version and have found it useful for copying and pasting info I find in the printed book.

What has been very impressive this year is the new ability of the CD data to be updated via the internet, which I guess is why they call it a WebCD. So far, there have been four such updates, which integrate with the previously installed data beautifully.

I was just perusing the latest update and notice that they have included a worksheet for those who want to figure out how much of an advanced rebate they can expect to be sent to them. I uploaded a copy of it to my website to share with readers. Since the 2007 Lacerte cover letter already includes the estimated rebate amount, I won’t need to use this worksheet; but others may find it useful.

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Tax Preparer Danger Signs

Posted by taxguru on February 28, 2008

This latest news release from the Calif. Franchise Tax Board, titled “FTB Reminds Taxpayers to Select Tax Preparers Wisely” has some good advice, along with a link to download their brochure on how to select an income tax preparer.

The following part of the news release sounds like it could be part of a Letterman Top Ten list; but it is unfortunately a true indication of the quality (or lack of) with some people in our profession.

Some common signs that a tax preparer may be abusive include:

· Claiming they can get bigger refunds than other tax preparers. Someone unfamiliar with your financial situation cannot make such a guarantee.

· Basing their fee on a percentage of the refund amount rather than the complexity of the tax return.

· Filing schedules where the information is fraudulent or lacks documentation to support the income or deductions.

· Refusing to sign the tax return as the paid preparer or not providing a copy for the taxpayer’s records. The preparer is required by law to sign the return.

· Require you to sign a blank return or in pencil.

· The preparer is not properly licensed or registered.

 

 

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