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.
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.
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.
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