Jump to content
ATX Community

Is anyone else behind? I'm feeling like a loser.


jasdlm
 Share

Recommended Posts

Anyone else behind where they usually are this year?  I still have 150 returns to process; returns are in the office longer than usual.  I have worked solidly (until at least 11 each night and sometimes as late as 1 a.m.) and all day on weekends.  4 hours off on Easter, 3 hours last Sunday because my son was confirmed, and 9 hours for my son's track meets).

I had a few grouchy clients call about estimates today.  (Both had enough carry forward in my first draft of the return to cover 1st quarter).  I'm feeling down.  Am I just super slow this year?  I'm really trying to figure it out.

Did you go through every return and calculate estimates, or only those whose 1st quarter estimate would be sizeable?

Misery loves company ... looking to see if I'm alone ;).

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  I will join the club you are in.  I am also way behind.  At least I am not scrambling to do the 4868's that will be middle May.

So far lucky no grouchy clients.  For estimates If the return is in I will do some estimates for them otherwise I am taking 2019 tax and doing 1/4 so an ESTIMATE, which is what they are supposed to be.  My opinion is that there should be no interest if we make up a difference by due date of return but that is just me.

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, I'm usually done by now and I have a few clients that haven't brought in the raw data, are very slow to respond to questions or supply missing information, or are not interested in filing until closer to the May 17th deadline. I can't convince a couple that the returns can be e-filed now and pay the balance owed within the next month, so I haven't received the signed authorization forms back yet. It's annoying.

 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

No such thing as an accounting emergency.

As long as no one is being penalized, you are right on time.  IMO, proper tax accounting has all tax payers having deposited within a few hundred dollars of their liability (not in a penalty scenario for those who choose to have a balance due) so there is not even a financial reason (large refund) for rushing.  Ever more so this year as the game changed during the filing period.

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Total loser here, but I missed a lot of hours caring for Mom, and when she moved to heaven, and I have a lot of new clients who've moved here.  So, I'm really winning, just not dancing in the end zone yet.  Actually, I was feeling pretty good this morning because I am only two weeks behind now, but I've spent half a day trying to figure out why Sage 941 report does not match Sage payroll register for 1st quarter for a big payroll I do.  I know I'll figure it out eventually, but I hate bookkeeping chores during tax season.  I'm really happy for the extended deadline.  I think I will wind up doing about 40 more returns this year than last, but today I feel like a sloth on xanax, only not as fast.

 

  • Like 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, RitaB said:

941 report does not match Sage payroll register

Starting with Q2 2020, a 941 can easily have different figures than paycheck reports.  FFCRA, ERC, SS deferral are examples.

I had a similar issue yesterday.  Someone complained their deposit record for first payroll of the year was too much, because, retroactively, they had a "non refundable" credit which should have applied.  Their position also matches the completely goofy IRS instructions.  Problem is, they are a semiweekly depositor, and they had to make their first deposit weeks before the nest payroll, when they "earned" the credit.  It all comes out "in the wash" at EOQ, no penalty, no differences, just a refund.  The customer still could not grasp how anyone could claw back a deposit already made (for no good reason), but did grasp the EOQ worked out perfectly.

---

I am so thankful to have new distractions.  We have the gift of our first grand baby to put things in perspective.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So not alone!  As soon as the IRS moves that deadline, clients relax.  This year was better than last year, but still a lot of laggards who haven't come in.  And such a scramble to get the estimated taxes for everyone!  I think I got them all, but at this point it's on them if they haven't given me anything and I forgot that they estimateds.
Had one client I just gave up on this morning.  I've been nagging, he's been promising...  emailed him vouchers this morning for the same amount as we paying last year.  Told him it's only a guess. 
Meanwhile, everyone else thinks today's a fine day for questions.  Spent most of the morning on emails.
 

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't want tax season to be any longer than it already is BUT it seems like broker statements and K1s come later every year.  I understand why - brokers are now required to track basis, show all kinds of information they did not have to in the past and K-1s are waiting for some of that same information to do the return that generates the K1.  So perhaps we need to permanently move this deadline. Or maybe I just need to find a new line of work. 

  • Like 9
Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, jasdlm said:

Misery loves company

But company does not reciprocate.  LOL.

We are SO far behind.  We lost multiple weeks this year with the retroactive changes (and belated state changes) and the panicking clients needed sedation by phone and email. Plus waiting for software updates, then going back to look at returns untouched for so long we had no memory of what was still to be done, what was finished, what we should expect to see...  Worse yet, I have absolutely NO patience anymore for any clients.  I've caught myself ready to chew someone's head off, more than once just barely before the words left my mouth.  I am so unutterably DONE with this season.

Realized this morning that I had not even looked at my own Q1 ES payments (what they should be, or scheduling them), and what's worse, I really don't give a flying bleep at a rolling donut either.  I'll get to it in a week or two or three.  Whatever.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

One guy yesterday had a zillion questions on why they owe so much.  Gee, he cut back his ES payments but his income was up $60K, I wonder why they might owe money?  Thought I had him settled, then today he started in on more questions.  I haven't opened any email from him since before lunch because I'm too close to telling him I don't care about his stupid questions, just figure out how you're gonna pay and just. shut. up.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am always behind, because basically ALL my clients drop off the same February week each year, giving me a huge backlog through 15 October. (I was thinking it was always around 22 February, but hubby says it's MLK weekend and following week; or, it might be dumping it all in my lap before they go on spring break to warm, sunny, fun places with their families, leaving me jealous and overworked.) That means that by the time I could file any 12 February, it was almost time to switch to preparing partnerships and S-corporations. Then switch to Trusts and calculating ES. Finally, tomorrow I will switch to preparing almost ALL (except for less than a dozen in February) my personal returns. That 12 February date really ruined my flow this year, prevented me from getting to know my software by preparing a whole bunch of the easier returns that come in early, feeling somewhat productive before slowing down to slog through biz returns. With the late date and many forms not ready, states not ready, constantly changing tax laws and "clarifications" of laws, I'm more behind, or at least feel more behind, than ever. I usually do my kids' returns (freebies) early, again it helps me learn and pick up speed and feel productive; but this year with forms running late, my kids all will be on extension (one kid's partnership is already on extension). Clients keep "checking in" with me, so I'm spending time on replying. Even on gal who always files late called me yesterday. My stack is growing instead of shrinking. I'm not sleeping well and have knots in my stomach. I spent hours last Friday rescheduling all the doctor appointments I'd made for after today to after 17 May. Which just postpones when I can visit grandkids, which makes me even sadder. And, I'm getting really cranky, which is more of an October thing for me. Rant over.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A few years ago, for tracking reasons, as well as sanity, I require all customer contact to be in written form.  I do not want to get into any more conflicts over who said what and who heard what, with written being much more efficient for me (I can reply anytime, not just office hours).  I can also offload the easier replies on nearly any family member...

Something to be said (thank you to my wife for the impetus!) to using the no phone calls as a gatekeeping method.  Yes, a very small number complain and ask for phone calls, but I have a pre written reply about how it is not fair to allow a phone call to jump the line, and how not offering phone calls means I still do not have to charge for support.

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, Lion EA said:

I am always behind, because basically ALL my clients drop off the same February week each year, giving me a huge backlog through 15 October. (I was thinking it was always around 22 February, but hubby says it's MLK weekend and following week; or, it might be dumping it all in my lap before they go on spring break to warm, sunny, fun places with their families, leaving me jealous and overworked.) That means that by the time I could file any 12 February, it was almost time to switch to preparing partnerships and S-corporations. Then switch to Trusts and calculating ES. Finally, tomorrow I will switch to preparing almost ALL (except for less than a dozen in February) my personal returns. That 12 February date really ruined my flow this year, prevented me from getting to know my software by preparing a whole bunch of the easier returns that come in early, feeling somewhat productive before slowing down to slog through biz returns. With the late date and many forms not ready, states not ready, constantly changing tax laws and "clarifications" of laws, I'm more behind, or at least feel more behind, than ever. I usually do my kids' returns (freebies) early, again it helps me learn and pick up speed and feel productive; but this year with forms running late, my kids all will be on extension (one kid's partnership is already on extension). Clients keep "checking in" with me, so I'm spending time on replying. Even on gal who always files late called me yesterday. My stack is growing instead of shrinking. I'm not sleeping well and have knots in my stomach. I spent hours last Friday rescheduling all the doctor appointments I'd made for after today to after 17 May. Which just postpones when I can visit grandkids, which makes me even sadder. And, I'm getting really cranky, which is more of an October thing for me. Rant over.

This really sums up my world and how I'm feeling.  Hugs to you.  (NOT the Rita kind!)

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am happy to report that while I worked more hours than I want to the last month, for me that's 5 or 6 hours in a day, I am over the hump.

I have about 10 1040s left, 4 business entity returns and 1st quarter payroll reports for 2 clients, so I started reducing my hours yesterday.

Once again,I feel so fortunate, that personal tax returns are a very small part of my practice.

 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Due to form changes, IRS changes, software changes, State changing mind every other day. I have about 50 in the hopper. I even had some today come in  wanting to know if I could get it done by 5PM. It has been a real PITA to get info this year.

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

57 minutes ago, TAXMAN said:

Due to form changes, IRS changes, software changes, State changing mind every other day. I have about 50 in the hopper. I even had some today come in  wanting to know if I could get it done by 5PM. It has been a real PITA to get info this year.

I feel ya, TaxMan. VA has been absolutely BRUTAL. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have never been this far behind.  Most clients are understanding--I tell them to blame congress for the whole thing, changing the laws midstream as they did.  Last year IRS gave us a three-month extension due to covid, but no laws had changed.  This year we get one  month while covid is still a factor and laws that affect many taxpayers have changed, meaning forms and software have to be updated, states legislators have to meet, tax pros have to learn about the changes and how to address them.  Plus estimates, trusts and estates did not have an extended due date.  What's up with that?

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Sara EA said:

trusts and estates did not have an extended due date.  What's up with that?

No major (retroactive!) tax law changes for them.  No such excuse for estimates; without completed returns it's a total guesstimate instead of a calculation.  They did not think.  No surprise there.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 hours ago, TAXMAN said:

I have about 50 in the hopper.

We have a good couple hundred in the hopper (for many of which we have no documents whatsoever, yet - and we could have told you who those clients would be back on Jan 2nd). 

MA still has given us NO guidance on how to apply their cockamamie rules for the UI exclusion to blended households, dependents (either direction - include with parent, include parents with them), and other oddball situations.  Clients for whom we can file need absolutely ludicrous amounts of explanation why X counted but Y did not, and more.  I think I've approved THREE returns for e-file in the last TWO WEEKS.  (Not counting a couple of extensions filed.)  Three!  It should be three before lunch, three after lunch, three between dinner and closing down for the night, rinse and repeat.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Today I finally was able to start returning calls, a client who left me two messages one day apart of each other was praying for me to be okay and was praying to find another tax accountant like me since she had not heard back from me.  

  • Like 3
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 minutes ago, Catherine said:

Clients for whom we can file need absolutely ludicrous amounts of explanation why X counted but Y did not, and more.

Yes, the amount of time explaining that I'll never get paid for. As Catherine, I spend more time explaining than preparing. Maybe because I'm still remote, so trying to explain before they even download their return to review/sign (frantic phone call), explain at a distance (go to page X line Y that's included in total Z that's transferred to Sch...), then explain it again to the spouse, etc. I don't think it'd be much different face-to-face, except that I could highlight and point and see when their eyes glaze over. "But it wasn't that way last year." "But my co-worker got free unemployment." "Why can't my high school kid get her own stimulus; all her friends do?" "Why is my NY tax higher this year?" [Note: it wasn't; you didn't have any withholding from your unemployment so your balance due is higher, not your total tax liability -- as if the spouse that's calling for her hubby will be able to explain that to him.]

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a new client that I may fire.  She makes very little and has 2 sons that live with her and cannot wrap her brains around why I am questioning why one may not be her dependent.  Is in college, but made 22k while her taxable (and nontaxable) income is about 30k.  second son made 12k.  Then yesterday she said she gave up on getting together the expenses because: (wait for it)

It was April 15 and she hadn't filed an extension so was screwed.

I sent an email explaining that the tax deadline had been moved to May 17.  I thought everyone had heard that at least.  Now I know why she was referred to me.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am soo far behind, but I am trying to cut myself some slack. It has just been hitting me the past couple of days that my mom is really gone and I find myself crying at very little notice. I was very bad, but busted my butt to get out all of my estimates done by Tuesday and my husband and I flew with our son on Wednesday morning. It was very exciting, he announced that this was a special flight, because his parents were on the plane. Everyone clapped for us and we had a genuinely happy time. We came back this morning and I feel better prepared to work harder again. 

 

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...