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When I started my first job in the tax department of a national CPA firm, I was surprised to see people paying quite a bit of money for tax preparation. They were paying around $350 for tax services in order to file a tax return with only a simple Schedule A.
That may not seem like much money, but it was about the equivalent of $1,500 today. That’s when I started teaching people how easy it is to prepare their own tax returns.
Here are some guidelines that can help you decide between filing yourself and hiring a pro to help you:
Do it yourself if:
Get professional help when:
Whether you prepare your own tax return or use a tax pro, you may choose to file your tax return online. In this case, the IRS will only get an electronic report, and believe me, those electronic reports are not that easy to read. Be sure to get a full printout of your tax return from your tax preparer or software. That will be the only full copy available to you, so be sure to save it someplace where you can easily retrieve it.
Eva Rosenberg, EA is the publisher of TaxMama.com ®, where your tax questions are answered. She is the author of several books and ebooks, including Small Business Taxes Made Easy. Eva teaches a tax pro course at IRSExams.com and tax courses you might enjoy athttp://www.cpelink.com/teamtaxmama.
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