The one thing that keeps me awake at night……

Author: Russell Smith
February 26, 2012

Website designers will build and design your website for you, Caterers will make a great meal for your guests and insurance brokers will get you a great deal on insurance.

What will accountants do for you?

If you read my blog, I would love you to email me what you think an accountant will do for you but in the absence of time I will tell you what the majority of people tell me when I ask them……

Save people tax.

Which is fine, more than fine – great, let’s save our clients tax (rarely do people say ‘help them increase their profits’, which is a real shame because accountants by being so close to the numbers are brilliantly placed to do this). However, if no accountant has told you this, let me tell you something….there are 3 main ways to save tax and the majority of accountants will not tell you all 3.

The 3 ways are:

1) Conservative ways to save tax – these are ways to save tax that HM Revenue & Customs will not bat an eyelid at.

2) Moderate ways to save tax – usually fine as long as you have got all the angles covered and the paperwork signed, HM Revenue & Customs may ask but you will be able to defend it with the right advice

3) aggressive ways to save tax – these are tax strategies and schemes that HM Revenue & Customs openly disagree with and if the client undertakes such a scheme, they will be investigated (mainly because the client will tell HM Revenue & Customs that they have done something that HM Revenue & Customs doesn’t like).

I am in the minority of accountants that will always tell the client any tax saving option from all 3 ways. Many don’t since either they don’t have the expertise or believe that option 3 (and sometimes 2) are too risky so they don’t tell the client at all, making the decision themselves on behalf of the client.

So, the one thing that keeps me awake at night is a client saying to me “why didn’t you tell me about this tax saving option?” I make sure that I am not in that position by always giving the options conservative, moderate or aggressive.

I’m starting to get some requests to blog on the story of why 5 April is the tax year-end. Seriously, it will be one of the most boring blog posts you will read (although I will enjoy writing it), dont’ tempt me!

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