Help Center / FAQ

You have questions, we have answers. Below you will find a compilation of our most frequently asked questions, and some tips we thought you may find helpful.

Tax Questions

How many years can you claim refund on your taxes?

You have a maximum of three years to file an original or amended return to claim a refund. So if it is March 2016 you can file a return for 2014, 2013, & 2012, of course, you can file 2015. If it is May 2016, you can only file 2015, 2014, & 2013 to claim a refund. If you had to pay tax on your return you only have two years to claim a refund on that money.

What does it mean to itemize your tax return?

Itemizing means you itemize your deduction based on a few deductions you may pay throughout the year. Being able to itemize usually means you own a home, but there are special occasions when you can itemize if you rent or have other living agreements (i.e. having substantial employee business expenses from your job).

The deductions that you will be able to itemize are:

  • Medical Deductions
    These are limited to 10% of your AGI

     

    • Copays, prescriptions, mileage, etc.
  • Taxes paid
    • State Income Tax, Real Estate Tax, Vehicle Tax, Town Fire Tax NOT Sewer/Water Tax
  • Mortgage Interest
    • Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), Points
  • Charitable Giving
    • Church tithings
    • Cash is given to 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations
    • Non-cash donations to non-profits (Salvation Army, Goodwill, donating a vehicle)
  • Job Expenses and Certain Miscellaneous Deductions
    These are limited to 2% of your AGI

     

    • Expenses of an employee that are unreimbursed by their employer
      • Mileage, Training, Meals, Travel, Supplies, Union Dues
    • Job Search expenses
      • Mileage, Training, Meals, Travel, Supplies
    • Miscellaneous
      • Tax Preparation fees
      • Investment Fees
      • Safe Deposit Box Fees
  • Gambling Losses
    • Equally to the amount of winnings if there are losses.

Of course, this is a summary of itemized deductions. Please if you have additional question Submit a Ticket or give us a call.

Married Filing Joint vs Married Filing Separate

Usually, married couples will have the lowest tax liability if they file a joint income tax return, however, this is not always the case.

If you marry in the prior year you MUST file either Married Filing Jointly (MFJ) or Married Filing Separately (MFS). Most likely you will file MFJ, but there are certain cases that you would file MFS. If you feel you have a reason to file MFS, please ask we can always run a test to proof out what is the best case for you.

I received a letter from the IRS/State, should I pay it?

In short, NO! Well, at least not right away. You should always Fax, Upload, or bring the letter in for us to look at.

The main reason is if you are receiving a letter from the IRS with a CP code (see the image in this post), the CP stands for Computer Paragraph. This means that this letter was generated entirely by a computer system and there is a good chance it might not be correct.

The states also use computers to generate their letters. Never go it alone with the IRS/State, that is why we are here.

How many years can you claim refund on your taxes?

You have a maximum of three years to file an original or amended return to claim a refund. So if it is March 2016 you can file a return for 2014, 2013, & 2012, of course, you can file 2015. If it is May 2016, you can only file 2015, 2014, & 2013 to claim a refund. If you had to pay tax on your return you only have two years to claim a refund on that money.

Why would I want to have you look at last year’s return?

Well… we know what we’re doing. We’re professionals and we don’t just stop at our certifications or designations. We are consistently training and learning about the ever-changing tax code. Know that anyone can get a PTIN from the IRS. A PTIN allows a “preparer” to file a return on behalf of someone. Only preparers with one of three designations are professionally trained and certified to be IRS qualified preparers. Those designations are Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Enrolled Agent (EA), or Tax Attorney (TA).

If you go to one of the national brands or a preparer without one of those designations there’s a chance that something could be off on your return… meaning you are leaving money on the table.

Business – General

Can you help me setup my business?

Yes of course! Actually, we always suggest talking to an accountant before setting up a new business. We can guide you properly based on your current financial situation and your projections of the new venture. An LLC, s-corp, or c-corp is not always the definition of being in business. There are other forms of structure that may be appropriate, and they may be better for your financial situation or the projected situation. A lawyer will simply do as you ask and set up the corporate structure potentially putting you into something you do not need.

From start to finish we can advise you on your business, remember you want to go down this path to do your skill not necessarily to become an accountant. We’re here to help.

Why should I always use a provider to run my payroll?

Payroll is one of the easiest things to control in your business. Although, if it gets out of whack then you set yourself up for possible severe problems with the IRS and State. This is the main reason you should always hire a qualified payroll provider. They will keep your head above water and make sure your employees are always paid on time and the government taxes paid up to date.

Business – Xero

Quick, on the fly, Adjustment to a Sale

Making an adjustment is as easy as clicking a button:

What is meant by automating your bank reconciliation?

Connect Xero to your bank account and get your bank statements imported and categorized automatically. Match statement lines from your bank account with transactions you create in Xero and just click OK to reconcile. It’s effortless to keep your accounts accurate and up to date.

  • Free up your time today

    Reconcile transactions from your bank, PayPal or credit card accounts in just one click. Get support for over 160 foreign currencies.

  • Always see accurate data

    You’ll be able to control cash flow and make better business decisions if you and your accounting professional can always see the up-to-date financial information.

  • Create custom rules

    Xero will match most of your bank transactions automatically. But you can create clever custom bank reconciliation rules to match more complex transactions.

  • Get anytime access on the go

    Whether you’re on a Mac, PC, tablet or phone, you’ll always have instant access to your data. Reconcile your accounts on the go, at work, or even over a coffee.

  • Quickly reconcile multiple transactions

    Reconcile large numbers of transactions faster than ever with fast cash coding. Import and automatically reconcile pre-coded bank statements.

Why do small businesses choose Xero?
  1. Unlimited collaboration with your staff and trusted advisors.
    • Add as many users as you want – it’s free. Work together as a team on financials. Collaborate online with your accountant and bookkeeper to get the advice you need. Invite an unlimited number of people for free.
  2. It’s the perfect balance of simplicity, power, and elegance.
    • Worry-free maintenance. Software updates are automatic and seamless. Every 3–6 weeks we release innovative new features and enhancements based on ideas from our customers.
    • Run your business anywhere, from any device. Xero works on any browser, and on any device flawlessly. Check balances, upload receipts, and invoice customers – all while you’re at lunch.
  3. Automate your books, so you can start planning and understanding your business.
    • Clear financial view of your business. The dashboard is the pulse of your business. See all your bank balances, recent sales, upcoming bills and expense claims at a glance.
  4. Online invoices and opened email tracking
    • Get paid faster. Connect seamlessly with customers through online invoicing and receive updates when an invoice is opened. Create professional recurring invoices and schedule bill payments.
  5. It’s always fast, with a best-in-class uptime of 99.97% since 2007.
Is Xero the same as Quickbooks?

If by the same you mean does it keep track of your income and expenses then yes? Does it do everything a small business owner requires, Yes? Is it better than Quickbooks, in many ways yes? In our experience and our expert opinion, it is hands-down the best software for most small businesses. We believe that last statement so much that we longer offer Quickbooks support to new clients.

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