Client Tax Engagement Agreement
Thank you for choosing Guardian CPA, LLC to assist you with your taxes. This notice confirms the terms of our engagement with you and outlines the nature and extent of the services we will provide.
SCOPE OF WORK
We will review your requested federal and state income tax returns. We will depend on you to provide the information we need to complete an accurate assessment and provide recommendations. All the information you provide to us will, to the best of your knowledge, be complete and accurate and will include any applicable information necessary for completion of your tax return(s). We may ask you to clarify some items but will not audit or otherwise verify the data you submit.
A tax organizer / planner of 'what to bring' is provided to help you collect the data required for your return. The Organizer will help you avoid overlooking important information. By using it, you will contribute to the efficient preparation of your returns and help minimize the cost of our services.
We will perform services only as needed to review, revise or prepare your tax returns. Our work will not include procedures to find misappropriated funds or other irregularities. Accordingly, our engagement should not be relied upon to disclose errors, fraud, or other illegal acts, though it may be necessary for you to clarify some of the information you submit. We will, of course, inform you of any material errors, fraud, or other illegal acts we discover.
PENALTIES AND APPLICATIONS OF TAX LAWS
The law imposes penalties when taxpayers underestimate their tax liability. Please call us if you have concerns about such penalties.
Should we encounter instances of unclear tax law, or of potential conflicts in the interpretation of the law, we will outline the reasonable courses of action and the risks and consequences of each. We will ultimately adopt, on your behalf, the alternative you select.
FINAL REVIEW, SIGNING, AND FILING
Our engagement to prepare your tax returns will conclude with the delivery of our analysis of your return(s) along with any recommended clarifications or corrections. As standard practice, we utilize electronic signing to enhance tracking and as an efficient client communication tool; whether in our office or remote, the communication is encrypted and approved by taxing authorities.
You have final responsibility for your income tax return(s). Please review your tax return(s) carefully before you sign the return.
If you elect not to e-file your returns with our office, you will be solely responsible to file the returns with the appropriate taxing authorities.
SERVICE FEES AND PAYMENT TERMS
The charges for our tax services are based on a fee schedule and the complexity of the return plus any out-of-pocket expenses. Invoices are due and payable upon presentation of the final return and BEFORE filing the return. Once payment is received, the final filing will be submitted to the taxing authorities. Once services have been rendered to the point a review has been provided to the client and payment has been made, should the client choose not to finalize the tax filing, refunds will not be issued. Accepted engagements with tax filings due within 15 days may incur an expedited fee [does not apply to filing for an extension] .
Past due invoices must be brought current before a new engagement is to be performed. In general, payments are applied to the oldest invoice first in cases of multiple invoices. A 30 dollar late fee is incurred if an account goes more than 5 days past due, and to the extent permitted by state law, an accruing interest charge may be added to all accounts not paid within 30 days. If bank fees are incurred for non-sufficient funds or returned checks, a 30 dollar fee will be assessed.
Review or revision of prior year returns is also available at an additional charge.
SECURITY, RECORDS AND RETENTION
As returns contain sensitive information, our practice supports and encourages clients to use firm provided links (i.e. secure portal) to encrypt your data and associated files. We also welcome mailing and in-person delivery (no appointment needed for drop off delivery). This practice is to safeguard each client.
We will return your original hard-copy records to you at the end of this engagement. We will retain copies of your records and our work papers for your engagement for seven years, after which these documents will be destroyed.
You should securely store these records, along with all supporting documents... i.e. donation or medical records, canceled debt, sale of property, business records, etc.. as these items may later be needed to prove accuracy and completeness of a return.
AUDITS AND EXAMINATIONS
Your taxes are subject to review by the taxing authorities. Any items that may be determined against you by an examining agent are subject to certain rights of appeal. In the event of an examination, we are available upon request to represent you, or to review the results of any examination. In case of firm error where documentation etc was made available to the firm by the client prior to filing, actions to make correction will be rendered with no charge. Amending or correcting returns, where the firm made no material error, may incur billable services.
As an added benefit to our clients, our firm may participate in third party partnership Audit Protection Programs to aid in addressing potential issues with applicable 1040 returns; this program is a form of audit protection and is included with some of the firm's 1040 preparation fees depending on tax preparation software used for returns (normally a 40-60 dollar upcharge with volume tax software companies).
Inquiries or examinations beyond the 1040 are additional services and would be billed be at our standard rates.
Our engagement to prepare your return(s) will conclude with the delivery of (the applicable tax year) completed returns to you, OR with e-filed returns, with your signature and our subsequent submittal of your tax return, OR where significant service has been performed and notice of withdrawal is given by either party. Payment for services is due in full when the return is ready to file, OR is due in partial amount in cases of early withdrawal by either party and where significant service has been rendered to construct the return on behalf of the client.
While ultimate responsibility for income tax return is on the taxpayer, we are here to guide you, to offer expertise to optimize your return, and to support you in providing an accurate, complete, and timely return. Our goal is client satisfaction through trust, building long lasting relations (loyalty discount begins with second year filings), and being a Guardian that hopefully reduces stress and protects your interests.
By scheduling your tax return appointment, you affirm that this notice correctly summarizes your understanding of the arrangements for this work as provided above. We look forward to serving you!
Guardian CPA, LLC reserves the right to modify terms of this agreement with or without prior notice.