My name is Mark Goodfield. Welcome to The Blunt Bean Counter ™, a blog that shares my thoughts on income taxes, finance and the psychology of money. I am a Chartered Professional Accountant and a partner with a National Accounting Firm in Toronto. This blog is meant for everyone, but in particular for high net worth individuals and owners of private corporations. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are written solely in my personal capacity and cannot be attributed to the accounting firm with which I am affiliated. My posts are blunt, opinionated and even have a twist of humor/sarcasm. You've been warned. Please note the blog posts are time sensitive and subject to changes in legislation or law.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Confessions of a Tax Accountant -2012- Week 5 - The Top Ten Accountant Pet Peeves about Personal Income Tax Season

In honour of David Letterman, today I present the top ten pet peeves accountants have during personal income tax season. Of course these peeves relate to experiences I had prior to arriving at my current firm and from what other accountants have told me, since my clients sign a blood pact to do none of these things.

Top Ten

10. Clients who in the past year have had a change of address, got married or had children and expect their accountant to reflect such on their tax returns by telepathy. 

9. Clients that provide a shoe box with every receipt they received during the year from tax forms such as T4's & T5's to receipts for his and hers waxing's (I outlawed shoe boxes ages ago). 

8. Clients who sell inherited shares and think we should know the adjusted cost base of the Bell Canada shares they inherited from their great grandfather in 1973, that have split six times since. 

7. Clients who do not track their auto or employment expense and say “just use last year's”. The problem being they have said just use last years seven years in a row and you have no clue if the expenses claimed on their tax return, have any resemblance to their actual expenses.

6. Clients and friends who call you up to tell you about their golf score and what a beautiful day it was, while you work on your 30th tax return of the day on your 30th consecutive day of overtime.

5. Clients who bring their income tax information in on the Monday of the third week of April and call on Wednesday to see if it’s done yet.

4. Clients who bring in all their tax forms in the original envelopes, unopened; and insist on opening each envelope one by one in front of you (with my limited patience threshold, suffice to say I have none of these types clients).

3. Clients that buy a Turnip farm limited partnership for $100,000 without consulting you, but then argue over $100 on their tax return invoice.

2. Clients who insist on emailing or faxing each individual tax slip as they arrive.

1(a). Clients that call you up complaining that their refund was not large enough.

1(b). Clients that insist on meeting with you and reviewing each item to be used in their personal tax return, as if you have never prepared a tax return before, or wouldn’t know what to do with their professional dues or interest expense.

The blogs posted on The Blunt Bean Counter provide information of a general nature. These posts should not be considered specific advice; as each reader's personal financial situation is unique and fact specific. Please contact a professional advisor prior to implementing or acting upon any of the information contained in one of the blogs.