FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Are you a CPA or an accounting firm?
We are definitely a CPA firm! There is a big step up between an accounting firm and a CPA firm. Only 2% of applicants pass the CPA exam the first time; it is that tough. But having achieved that designation it makes the difference between a firm that just records a client’s tax history and one that writes it.
Are you a member of the AICPA?
Craig Hawkins, CPA is definitely a member of the AICPA! Being an AICPA member firm assures my clients that they are getting the most accurate and timely tax planning and preparation possible because AICPA member firms have periodical peer reviews to insure that the firm is in compliance with current standards.
Are you a member of National Association of Tax Professionals (NATP)?
The NATP provides support, research, education, products, and services they make tax preparation successful for both the clients and the tax professions. The NATP is the largest non-profit organization that serves professionals in the tax preparation and planning industry.
Do you deal with the IRS?
All the time! As a CPA I can practice before the IRS and I maintain a power of attorney on most of my clients that requires the IRS to contact me every time they contact the taxpayer. It is not uncommon for me to have responded to the IRS before you have even opened your notice from them.
Are many of your clients audited?
In the last 15 years only one client has been audited and that was resolved to our client’s satisfaction. Nobody likes getting a letter or notice form the IRS; so we work hard to avoid having the IRS audit or contact our clients. But if the IRS does send a notice, we are right there to respond on your behalf and we do it for free.
I am afraid of the IRS can you help me?
Being afraid of the IRS is very common. Fear of the IRS is understandable. Our job will be to help you convert that fear to legitimate respect. Everyone should respect the IRS and follow the rules. Many people do not understand that there are many ways to pay less tax while following the rules. The only time to fear the IRS is when you are “Cheating”.
How much is it going to cost?
If you were going to have brain surgery you wouldn’t ask a dentist how much it was going to cost. We pride ourselves not on how much it costs, but the fact that we typically save our clients more than their fee for their tax preparation. We are a small CPA firm working out of a small office; a small office where big things happen and you don’t have to pay downtown prices to get exceptional service.
Where are you?
We operate out of a home that has been converted to an office at:
112 W Prince Street
Tampa, Florida 33612.
Do you work with clients outside of Florida?
Yes, I have clients across the nation as well as several foreign countries.
What are your hours of operation?
We try to schedule our appointments between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM Monday through Friday. That being said, we know that our schedule does not fit everyone else’s so we are open to setting special meeting times.
Do you have a payment plan for your services?
We do for our professional and small business clients. We have four different monthly service contracts that provide progressively greater service features. Our Bronze client receives 4 different services, Silver has 8, Gold has 11 and Platinum has 14. Just contact us and we can discuss which plan would be best for you.
Do you do bookkeeping?
Yes, we provide bookkeeping services, but reluctantly. Having us do your bookkeeping is generally not your best choice. We work with you to find an inexpensive and simple way to get your bookkeeping done. The most common solution is QuickBooks. We are QuickBooks certified and we love to have your tax information to come to us via QuickBooks and are happy to help you become proficient in using it.
Do you take credit cards?
We take all major credit cards including; VISA, Master Card, Discover and American Express.
Do provide payroll services?
Not any more, we found that using a trusted payroll company provided our clients with services beyond our capability and oftentimes at a reduced cost. You get a dedicated payroll company that does what they do best and we get all your timely information forwarded to us for your tax preparation so we can do what we do best.
Do I get a bill if I call or e-mail a question?
NEVER! Having a relationship with your CPA that encourages you to ask those troubling questions is so important to both our success. Whether your phone in or e-mail; you will always have access to our ears and our lips.
I am thinking of incorporating or forming an LLC. Can you give me some advice?
The decision whether to incorporate, to form an LLC or not and which type of entity to use is one of the most important business decisions you will make. We will gladly share the tax benefits of various entities and help you reach a determination as to which entity would best suit your needs. Once you make that decision we can set up your new entity and file it with the State.
I am just a W2 wage earner. Would you prepare my taxes?
Yes we would. But in all honesty we steer many potential clients to using TurboTax; it is a great product for those who have simple tax returns. Our knowledge of the tax code and how the IRS functions is best employed in helping small businesses, professionals, people with rental properties or investment income to reduce their tax exposure to the lowest levels legally possible .
Can I FAX or E-mail my documents to you?
You can FAX or scan and email your documents to us. However, there are security issues with both of those means of getting your information to us. We would prefer that you use the ‘Secure Send’ tool built into the Tampa Tax Coach website. Secure Send is highly encrypted and safely protects the transfer of your valued information.
Do you have a Security Portal?
The ‘Secure Send’ tool built into the Tampa Tax Coach website answers that question. Secure Send is highly encrypted and safely protects the transfer of your valued information
Do you provide Remote Support?
We utilize software that; with your permission, allows us to access your computer so we can see exactly what you see. This software is great because it allows us to work directly with you and even train you on how to use QuickBooks. Find out more HERE.
Do you do Audits?
Are you sure you need an audit? Audits are very expensive; so where possible we do compiled and reviewed financial statements that will often suffice for the IRS. We tend to leave to audits to firms that specialize in that area and work on being aggressive enough keep our client’s tax obligation to a minimum without encouraging an audit.