Tax Compliance and the Comprehensive Approach

Jeanine advocates a good accounting system with a comprehensive approach to your tax compliance consisting of tax planning, tax preparation and filing, and taxpayer representation only when necessary.
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If taxpayers engage their accountants year-round, getting off to a good or remedied start with an accounting system customized with a Chart of Accounts (the index to your general ledger also known as your GL), then they can be assured that their financial transactions are timely and organized. The GL can include not only accounts required to track your financial history and progress, but also accounts to monitor your tax compliance for income taxes, payroll taxes, sales & use taxes, fixed assets, intangible assets, and more. The thoroughly collected data can then be coded to the appropriate financial reports (financial statements) and the required tax returns (entity income, owner income, payroll, sales & use, property, other) from the data that has been coded appropriately and reconciled to your bank and credit card statements.

Planning makes a difference between being prepared to comply with tax laws and suffering the consequences of not being prepared. Knowing about your taxpayer obligations ahead of time, and becoming aware of new laws by staying in communication with your tax professional, gives you time to absorb the knowledge, ask questions, learn about your options when they exist, and take action or make elections on your tax returns. Your tax professional can only advise you and protect your best interests if you are available to speak with him or her, scheduling quarterly and annual consulting appointments when recommended, usually a couple of weeks prior to quarterly due dates for tax estimates, and again in late January prior to the income tax season starting in February. Providing updates to your status, tax documents, tax organizer (interview) responses, tax documents, clarifications, and availability to answer clarification requests messaged to you, are important elements of good planning, preparation and filing of taxes. Clients paying their required tax estimates for income and/or payroll compliance purposes on time and in full, are setting themselves up for success in avoiding additional financing fees and interest charges on top of their tax liabilities.

Hopefully, taxpayers will NOT need taxpayer representation for non-filing tax returns, non-payment of required taxes, or other tax obligations. Taxpayers who get into trouble in these areas COULD represent themselves in tax proceedings before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and/or state or local taxing authorities, BUT this is NOT recommended. The ONLY professionals who can represent taxpayers before the IRS are Enrolled Agents or EAs licensed by the US Department of the Treasury, Certified Public Accountants or CPAs, and licensed attorneys or Esquires. Do note that, NOT all CPAs and licensed attorneys are specialized in tax compliance! EAs are licensed specifically in tax compliance and especially suited for tax planning and taxpayer representation, but CPAs and attorneys are NOT specifically trained nor licensed in tax compliance. Therefore, if you are not choosing to utilize EAs for your tax planning and/or tax compliance needs, then research the experience and qualifications of CPAs and attorneys carefully, to determine that they are in fact experienced and knowledgeable about tax compliance.

Jeanine is an Enrolled Agent (EA) federally licensed by the US Department of the Treasury, an accountant holding a Master’s Degree in taxation and accounting, with undergraduate degrees in accounting, finance, and paralegal studies, and 38 plus years of business experience helping businesses and their owners and managers. Jeanine participates in continuous, annual professional development to enhance knowledge and skills in tax law and resolution techniques. Her strong understanding of IRS processes, audit procedures, and collection strategies, along with proficiency in tax software, accounting software, and Microsoft Office Suite, enable Jeanine to service clients monthly, work directly with vendor services, and to make referrals when specialists such as financial auditors, financial planners, and attorneys are requested by clients.

Jeanine is detail-oriented with strong analytical and problem-solving skills but possesses excellent communication and interpersonal skills to effectively liaise with clients and tax authorities. She has assisted tax teams in offers-in-compromise, payment plans, audits, letter responses, filing extensions, and other taxpayer responses. Although the best course of action is planning, filing on time, and paying taxes when due via withholdings or estimates, Jeanine is knowledgeable in how to assist taxpayers if they get into trouble. Jeanine tends to work with client tax departments as a representation team member when opportunities arise, primarily outside of December through April, having the ability to work independently and collaboratively within a team environment. She will however refer larger cases to a specific colleague who operates his own representation firm, and who works exclusively on representation issues when taxpayer clients do not have their own corporate tax departments to represent them.