5 Topics No Accountant Should Avoid

Certified Public Accountant
Gary M. Kaplan, C.P.A., P.A.
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As every accountant knows, providing full range services can often mean delving into difficult topics. Nowhere is this more true than with business clients. If you are not discussing these five topics with every business client you see, you are leaving both them (and you!) open to unnecessary risk.

1. Avoiding Red Flags That May Trigger an IRS Audit

In a world of ever-increasing regulation, tax compliance is a huge issue with many businesses. They should be aware of state and local tax laws as well as federal regulations. In addition, they should be aware of new laws coming down the pike and have a plan for compliance. All businesses should have a system for the following tax-related duties:

  • Keeping track of W2s and 1099s for staff and contract employees
  • Keep tax practices compliant with online sales in other states and countries
  • Ensure paperwork is stored
  • Routinely review paperwork for red flags that may trigger an IRS audit

2. Preparing for Sustainable Growth

Most business owners embrace growth, with good reason. However, growth brings changes that can affect value, taxes, liabilities, and more. Clients should be aware of the tax and paperwork challenges involved in expanding, adding new locations, increasing staff, mergers, acquisitions, sales, and any other growth that is possible in the future. This will aid them in making balanced decisions and sustainable changes.

3. Keeping Track of Inventory

Even in the digital era, many businesses work in sales and resales of physical goods. Because inventory is time consuming, many businesses do not give it the attention that it deserves. Sales taxes can be confusing as well, especially for those that sell online and thus in multiple areas. Every business should have an ordering process that is automated to allow restocking, sales tax collection, and tracking unsold inventory. Keeping this process as automated as possible with point of sale software will ensure that nothing falls through the cracks.

4. Managing and Reducing Risk

Failure to prepare and manage risks is a common small business mistake. As an accountant, you can help your clients to avoid this pitfall with solid risk management advice. This advice is more needed than many firms realize, with around 75% of small businesses failing to adequately prepare. Your clients should have plans for operational disruptions, as well as current insurance policies. In addition, they should have checks and measure to protect against fraud and ensure information privacy. 

5. Planning for a Bright Financial Future

Accountants increasingly act as financial advisors, helping business owners to understand the financial and tax implications of different strategies. Clients need to know what strategies could increase their cash flow and profits. This includes investments and wealth management. Budgeting also is a major area where many accountants can be a valuable aid to their clients. There was a time when many small businesses kept an accountant on staff, but they increasingly are relying on outside firms such as yours.

Understanding the financial and tax implications of different decisions has never been as complicated as it is now. This makes good advice from an accountant more important than ever. Your clients are relying on you to help them stay on the right side of regulations while planning for a successful future.

About gkaplancpa

Gary M. Kaplan, MAcc, MST, C.P.A.

Gary Kaplan’s desire for excellence shows in his training, experience and service he provides as a top rated Boca Raton CPA. He completed his undergraduate degree at Nova Southeastern University. He went on to earn both his Masters in Accounting at Nova Southeastern University and his Masters in the Science of Taxation at Florida International University. Gary has been practicing as a Certified Public Accountant since 1997, attaining his expertise in all aspects of accounting, business and personal tax and strategic planning. He listens to each client and helps them achieve their own, unique goals. Gary values educating others and giving back to his community: he has served as an Adjunct Professor of Accounting at Florida Atlantic University, and gives accounting presentations at St. Thomas University School of Law. In 2013, Gary Kaplan received his certification for retirement planning and is now a Certified Specialist in Retirement Planning™ (CSRP).

Gary is licensed to practice in Florida, Maryland, Utah, New York and Washington D.C. He has gained a reputation as a professional who provides quality work, value and personal attention to his clients.


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