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Discussion:And The Hits Just Keep Right on Coming

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Discussion Forum Index --> Tax Questions --> And The Hits Just Keep Right on Coming


Death&Taxes (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
Here in Toonerville, where we don't have mail delivery, Pam was picking up the posts yesterday and dropping off our flats. There were two yellow slips in the box, meaning packages. The Postmistress brought them out, saying "Isn't it ever going to let up?" Pam remarked that the senders must think I am sitting here doing nothing, just waiting for their returns to arrive. The clerk thought a minute, then realized, "Oh, I'm in the same position. I have to give my accountant my information."

Michaelstar (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
One might think that the "accountant" would have given their client a courtesy call by now. Does anyone else around here make courtesy calls this time of year? Don't tell me i'm the only one.......... unless of course your holding your collective breath hoping that one does not come back :-}

Wwtaxes (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
We send out a reminder letter in January. I send out reminders for estimated tax payments to a handful of Sole Props, and Payroll reminders to Corps. Other than that, we only call those that we know are perpetually late and will otherwise stop by on the due date.

TexCPA (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
Courtesy emails work best for me !

Klesher (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
No courtesy calls here ! They know when taxes are due!

Sw (talk|edits) said:

April 11, 2007
Who has time to callImage:scream.jpg

Pegoo (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
No time for wake up calls here unless it's billable.

Actionbsns (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
I need to do some courtesy calls and I keep proscrastinating my way out of it - oh wait! That's not procrastination, it's tax preparation!!!

Wwtaxes (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
The only reminder calls I'm making this week are to clients who STILL haven't gotten back to me with missing information. I'm also getting pretty surly about this, hence, I wouldn't deem my demeanor as 'courteous'.

Bengoshi (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
Yes, secretary makes courtesy calls. It works pretty well most of the time. Ww, yep those have got to be among the most irritating clients. Especially when there's just one thing holding up the return.

Death&Taxes (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
Isn't there a subtle fear that you will find they have changed accountants, or maybe that is a hope!!!!

Kevinh5 (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
SW, not only who has time to call, but who has time for courtesy????

Tilt53 (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
There's always time for courtesy just like there's always room for Jello.

Kevinh5 (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
One of my favorite poems from childhood:

A dragon's no match, for my hungry Crosspatch, he's such a carnivorous fellow.

He could eat a whole bunch, for breakfast and lunch, and still have some room left for Jello.

Kathyt (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
I do make the calls, but not as a courtesy for the client, I do it so I don't have to sit here all day on the last day waiting for people to call or come by and ask for an extension. When the last tax return is picked up I am ready to leave this office and I don't want to sit around all day waiting for the last client to call, so I call them first. But if somebody has a better system that would still allow you to leave after the last return is picked up I sure would like to hear it. For me, when the last return is picked up, it's like when the bell rings on the last day of your senior year in high school.

Vbcpa (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
Kevin - I'm with you - I'm too tired for tact - clients who call and tell me what day it is get told quite quickly that YES I do know what day it is....I may not know my name at this point....but I do know the day :)

Regarding calls, I will have my assistant start calling folks tomorrow and ask them to fax us their documents with witholding and or to bring in a check to go in with their extension....they are spoiled.. as most wait until I call before they finally get their act together....I've had 15 returns dropped off since yesterday....they are spoiled and lazy!

Deback (talk|edits) said:

April 11, 2007
>>For me, when the last return is picked up, it's like when the bell rings on the last day of your senior year in high school.

Or like getting out of jail.

Kevinh5 (talk|edits) said:

11 April 2007
Deb, you're not in Appalacia, you're in Michigan, so it shouldn't be the same thing.

Wwtaxes (talk|edits) said:

12 April 2007
Here's another hit for you from dropped off paperwork for a Schedule C:

"My office occupies 1/4 of 1 room of a 4 room apartment, rent is $695 (plus $80 garage)"

Another line on the same sheet: Electricity: $336

BTW, the TP is an actor.

Bottom Line (talk|edits) said:

13 April 2007
Don't do courtesy calls. I do however call corps that haven't renewed their annual fee to make sure they pay by 5/1. (Somehow when they forget to file, it becomes my fault)

FLAEA (talk|edits) said:

13 April 2007
Bottom Line - I make those calls to corps too to remind them if they haven't filed their corp annual reports. Saves them $400 penalty and they love me for that - they also blame me if they forget.

RSRAGENCY (talk|edits) said:

13 April 2007
Just had 'the call'...client's daughter just called, said, "I know you told me my mom didn't have to file anymore", but .....and she proceeded to tell me what income the mother had.....I said, yes, I know. Only SS and small amount of interest....did anything change since last year?? "No.",

so, I said, well she need not file...."Well, please hold on while I add up the interest....." and I, like a fool, HELD ON......

Maybe I should have caller ID installed....that way I'd be forewarned...

DJ

Bottom Line (talk|edits) said:

13 April 2007
I've told my parents the last three years that they don't have to file. Dad gets it. Mom keeps worrying and wanting to "put all the paperwork together". Due to senile dementia, she can't remember/understand that they don't need to file and can't remember to get the papers together. (I'd file the return just to keep her happy.) She can remember that it is tax season but can't remember to get her paperwork together or that she doesn't need to file. Amazing what parts of the brain dementia gets.

TaxManager (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
I have one client that I call my 13th client. Every year she gets me her info on the 13th of April. She goes on extension because she always has a large balance due and doesn't want to pay it on the 15th. She would rather get hit with the interest and penalties. I had been trying to contact her for weeks so that she would at least get me her info earlier this year. After several phone calls and messages left I finally got a hold of the woman's mother on Wednesday night and she told me that her daugther will be away untill Saturday but that she would call her and let her know that I was waiting for the info. Yesterday morning the mother called me back and said she would over nite the info to me. About 5 minutes later she calls me back and says my daughter wanted me to let you know that we do have untill Tuesday the 17th this year. I wanted to scream. She is definately getting the PITA fee increase this year. Much higher then the prior years PITA fee. :)

Deback (talk|edits) said:

April 14, 2007
>>Maybe I should have caller ID installed....that way I'd be forewarned...

DJ - I have caller ID, and the only advantage in this case is you get to do a grimace before you answer the phone.

Vbcpa (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
deb - thanks for the laugh - exactly what I do - add to that the muttering under the breath - grrrrr "not again" grrrrrr "what now!" grrrrr "they've already picked up their return!" grrrrrrr... lol

Waynecpa (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
One of my very first January appointments wasn't pleased that he was owing - we have been going back and forth with 22 emails from him finding additional home office expenses, business expenses, deciding whether he would be doing IRA, etc. I hadn't heard from him since March 13th, so sent him a courtesy email yesterday asking if we can go to final. Here is his response:

"Not to worry... tax return has been taken care of."

Not to worry - a bill from me will be forthcoming and no organizer next year!

Bottom Line (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
And then he won't want to pay because you didn't "do" anything for him

Waynecpa (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
Other than try to keep him on (or pretty close to) the straight and narrow. Same client had to do an amended return in April last year after not being able to come up with the 4000 he claimed for his IRA deduction.

Bottom Line (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
(Pulling out my crystal ball) He'll be back (after he gets a nastygram). That will be your opportunity to crank up your rate and apply your PITA fee.

Vbcpa (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
I wouldn't take him back - sounds like even with the pita fee - he's not worth your time....

Waynecpa (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
I haven't fired too many clients - any standard approach that people take? A Dear John letter?

Bottom Line (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
Depends upon the client. The last one I fired was a nut job and I was afraid he might "go postal". Some you can get rid of by simply raising your fee and they'll go elsewhere. Some you can tell that you're downsizing (I'm getting rid of all clients whose fees generate less than $X per year). Some you can just say that you cannot provide the services/attention that they need. I wouldn't be too specific, especially if you are going to put it in writing. (Don't want to call someone an A** and put it down on paper.) If they owe you money, do everything you can to collect before you fire them. I usually prefer the "you need more than I can provide" because then they take it as a compliment instead of an insult.

TexCPA (talk|edits) said:

14 April 2007
Wayne and BL

Thank you for your posts: BL you nailed it on the head "And then he won't want to pay because you didn't "do" anything for him ", that is why I use the engagement letter !

Wayne: He might be back but who cares, tell him "your practice is going in a different direction" , you don't need to tell him the direction, which is "away from him", I've used that one before, but BL definitely has the right attitude.

PVVCPA (talk|edits) said:

April 16, 2007
look what showed up in my outlook inbox today:


Hi Paul,

I'm sorry to make waves. I am been mentally ill for a more than a year due to an adverse drug reaction from medications I was prescribed from a 3 year old Worker's Compensation injury, and I allowed <HUSBAND'S NAME> full control over our finances. I am now finding numerous mistakes in his accounting practices, he has paid our utilities and property taxes late several times in this period, he wired money to people in other parts of the world I know nothing about, and appears to have stretched the truth on our taxes. This is all overwhelming to me at a time, when I was finally starting to clear my mind of the horror from the last year.

<HUSBAND'S NAME> and I are having disagreements over finances, and so I am only trying to assert my rights with you, so you know I want to be aware of any delays in completing our taxes. I would like them completed as soon as possible, as along as it is reasonable to do so. I would like to have the bottom line from my <BUSINESS> operation as soon as possible. And I would like to be made aware of any information you still need from <HUSBAND'S NAME> to complete our taxes, so I can help him sort through his papers and find the info for you.

Thank you for your consideration in this matter.

JAD (talk|edits) said:

17 April 2007
What are you going to do? My liability insurance carrier would tell me to disengage, so to speak. Evidence of tax fraud, conflict of interest dealing w/ both H & W in upcoming divorce.

Actionbsns (talk|edits) said:

17 April 2007
Paul, I thought I was the one getting all these clients!!! (Please don't forward my name to any of them) We had a new lady come in today, understanding she would be placed on extension. It sounded so easy on the phone, then she started gradually telling me about things - the ohana rental, only because someone sent her a 1099 for rent paid, then, well it wasn't much that was paid and did I really consider that to be income? Expenses on the ohana?, well actually, you see we built a house at another part of our property and we live there and tried renting the rest of the other house. Turned out to be rented most of the year. Now we are literaly pulling out the pliers to pull some teeth to get some more information. To quote Simon and Garfunkel "...where do they all come from?" This is another one surprised that I've asked a bunch of questions.

PVVCPA (talk|edits) said:

April 17, 2007
I think I'm gonna prepare an extension form and go have a drink or two (or more).

And then after I sleep and the headache goes away, I will take your advice and give Camico a call.

Gmacdon167 (talk|edits) said:

17 April 2007
As to if I make phone calls to clients I have not heard from the answer is: In some cases. If I know client has moved or their situation has changed (like marriage) I don't call. Otherwise I normally do. My reason is, I have an extremely loyal client base and serve them well for a reasonable fee. I feel that after many years of establishing a relationship, the least they could do is call and tell me they have made other arrangements. Also, if they feel they have been overbilled or not served well, I want to know it!

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