I recently read that Jesus delivered his tax payments in the mouth of a catfish. Though I’d love to do the same, I haven’t the energy. I’ll stick with the paper-filled accounting …
I recently read that Jesus delivered his tax payments in the mouth of a catfish. Though I’d love to do the same, I haven’t the energy. I’ll stick with the paper-filled accounting process for now.
When my accountant of many years retired, she referred all of her clients to another firm. I dutifully followed, but right off the bat didn’t much like the new firm because they failed to meet my three-point criteria; precision, communication, creativity. Yes, they were creative and almost precise, but communication was poor to non-existent, and in my book all points have equal value. For example, when I happened by the office during a weekday, no one was there.
As for precision, the new firm made a small oversight that cost us. Though not entirely their fault, it had to be corrected with an amendment and apologies to the government via more money. Perhaps part of the difficulty was that everything was done by phone; none of us ever actually met in person plus I had difficulty with the online portal system.
This year I looked for a new accountant. Online searching, particularly Yelp reviews, were my methods. I found two suitable candidates but when I called them, they were not taking any more clients. A third candidate seemed promising. The secretary called back after I left a message (over the weekend no less) and answered all my questions. I was impressed. Good communication? Check! I now needed to see if they’d pass the remaining criteria; precision and creativity.
My husband and I arrived at the office at the appointed time. After a short wait, the head accountant greeted us with a smile. For some reason, I don’t know why, I was expecting a much older man. (I should know by now that everyone is younger than me). I’ll call my new accountant, Mr. Young. I pulled out the requisite papers, our financial records and last year’s tax return.
“Oh, I already have that,” said Mr. Young. I was perplexed. Had the accounting profession become like the medical profession with all of one’s records in one portal that can be shared ubiquitously?
“How is that possible?” I asked.
“We did your return last year,” he replied adding, “My secretary told me you were unhappy with your accountant last year, which was us and, yet, here you are with…us…again.”
“How is that possible?” I repeated.
“We merged with the firm that was already in this building,” said Mr. Young.
Suddenly, I was in the very awkward position of explaining to our old accountant why I was sitting in front of him thinking he was our new accountant, and why I left him in the first place. I laid out the criteria; precision, communication, creativity.
Though exceptionally good at communication right then and there, Mr. Young apologized profusely for past miscommunication. He surmised that on the day I happened by the office, they were probably either in the process of moving or working from home due to Covid. Most likely working from home. Totally understandable.
As for last year’s oversight, Mr. Young took all responsibility although, really, part of it lay with my husband’s inexact lingo; ‘pre-paid’ taxes does not necessarily translate to ‘estimated’ taxes.
As for creativity, when I explained to my husband that the accountant could not just willy-nilly deduct whatever he wanted otherwise he might lose his license and we might go to jail, Mr. Young added, “Still, it’s my job to save you as much money as possible.” We all nodded in agreement. This year, I feel certain that I am in even better hands with my new old accountant.
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