Communication with Accountant

Discussion in 'Accounting & Tax' started by Tobytom, 9th Jul, 2019.

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  1. Tobytom

    Tobytom Well-Known Member

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    Howdy all. Just a query as I have doubts with my current accountant. To give a picture and context I have two Investment properties in my own name and a small amount in shares in the US via a trust

    How much communication should I have with my accountant?

    Basically I have no communication with my accountant until I submit everything for my Tax submission, should I be more proactive with Tax planning?

    Would call my self as an active investor generally but I feel I need to be more active but don’t want to waste an accountants time in the same breath
     
  2. Terry_w

    Terry_w Lawyer, Tax Adviser and Mortgage broker Business Member

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    I am not an accountant but would ask what is your agreement with them?
    Lodge tax returns only or tax returns plus tax advice?
     
  3. Trainee

    Trainee Well-Known Member

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    Are you willing to pay more than you currently are?
     
  4. Tobytom

    Tobytom Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Terry. Initial meeting approximately 2 years ago I mentioned I was looking for a mix of simply Tax returns and strategies both short term and long term to maximise my Net wealth. happy to pay for that advice no such thing as a free lunch
     
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  5. Tobytom

    Tobytom Well-Known Member

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    Happy to pay for good advice in regards to Tax planning and longer term strategies
     
  6. craigc

    craigc Well-Known Member

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    The person responding above with all his tax tips & strategies would seem to be what you’re looking for!
     
  7. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Founder Staff Member

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    Do you have a tax problem?

    Has anything changed since you last met with your accountant?

    If you need advice - make an appointment and talk to them. Otherwise, it's largely just going to be business as usual.
     
  8. jazzsidana

    jazzsidana Well-Known Member

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    Really comes down to type of relationship you have with your accountant.

    Most accountants will be more than happy to answer client queries if client calls/emails them.
     
  9. Trainee

    Trainee Well-Known Member

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    And type of accountant as well.
     
  10. Mike A

    Mike A Accountant Business Member

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    @Terry_w would be great but then you need someone to lodge the returns
     
  11. Mike A

    Mike A Accountant Business Member

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    If its part of their service agreement for sure. Ive experienced situations in the past where an agreement was reached for returns only and no advice and then complained when the 10 emails werent answered quickly enough. Out of that space entirely except for a few private clients who value advice and its a much nicer space to be in.
     
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  12. Tobytom

    Tobytom Well-Known Member

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    That is true @Simon Hampel I need to take the lead
     
  13. Tobytom

    Tobytom Well-Known Member

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    @craigc @Terry_w seems incredible with his knowledge. Not sure where I am on the Journey if it's two early to speak to Terry when he is taking on clients
     
  14. kierank

    kierank Well-Known Member

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    We live in Brisbane and our accountant is in Sydney:

    1. When we owned businesses, we would meet face-to-face in Sydney every April/May for EOFY tax planning. Rest of communication was via phone, email and post.

    2. When we retired, no need for face-to-face meetings. So, all communication is via phone, email and post.

    3. If the ALP had won the last election, we would be meeting face-to-face sometime about now in Sydney to develop strategies to minimise/eliminate the impact of the ALP’s policies. Rest of communication would be via phone, email and post.

    So, meetings with our accountant is very much “needs driven” and I normally determine the need.

    Face-to-face meetings with our Brisbane-based financial planner are a minimum of one per year (normally March/April) but, some times, we have two per year (eg large changes in SMSF rules, large movement on sharemarkets, tax changes, ...).
     
  15. Terry_w

    Terry_w Lawyer, Tax Adviser and Mortgage broker Business Member

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    Thanks but I am not actually an accountant. I give tax advice as a lawyer.
    I can work with a clients accountant though, to keep them honest, make sure they are not missing things or claiming things incorrectly. Also people have different ideas so they might miss something that I think of and vice versa. 2 heads are better than one sometimes.
     
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  16. Mike A

    Mike A Accountant Business Member

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    now where did i see that before :p
     
  17. craigc

    craigc Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I read this request as after tax advice,legal strategies rather than accounting & tax returns.

    Agree that working with accountant to ensure all information is captured and not missed (ie if client forgot to advise of important facts) is the best option.
     
  18. Tobytom

    Tobytom Well-Known Member

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    Awesome with your thoughts as always Kieran.
    Your initial thoughts were invaluable
     
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  19. Paul@PFI

    [email protected] Tax Accounting + SMSF Business Plus Member

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    I am often asked by clients for my opinions on structure, loans, property advice etc. I'm not qualified to do that. What I think about property will be different to each clients view. My role isnt to educate them in things they dont know other than in tax. That said I always welcome a request as it can help to steer them in the correct direction or guide their understanding.

    I'm also not giving them a financial plan and personal wealth advice.