IRS Offers Tax Preparer Advice
Internal Revenue Service spokeswoman Karen Connelly says there are some things you should look for when hiring someone to do your taxes.
Connelly says it's a good idea to use someone who is well-established in your community and who is likely to be in business years into the future, in case you should face an audit, She says word of mouth from friends, relatives and business associates can often be a useful guide in determining reputable tax preparers as opposed to "fly by night" preparers who may not be available down the road.
Connelly says anyone who claims to be an attorney, Certified Public Accountant or Enrolled Agent should be able to document their certification. She says you should avoid any tax preparer who doesn't have PTIN certification from the IRS because the agency doesn't recognize them as a valid tax preparer.
Connelly says you should never hire someone who promises to get you a bigger refund than anyone else, because such people may skirt the law over the short term to increase your refund, leaving you to deal with the legal ramifications later.