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When do you quit?


ILLMAS
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Just wondering when do you quit doing tax returns?? I find myself receiving tons of calls just days before the deadline, but I think this year I might disconnect my phone April 13 - 15, I'd rather lose these clients than work my butt off, then have them pay me months later. What are other tactics do you use, share your story.

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Unfortunately, we take them up to the end, but file extensions. Usually, we don't get too many last day stragglers and once we tell them we file extensions, they go somewhere else. Truthfully, I would like to quit by Feb 1:). But to no avail does that work.

Sara

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I have one client that is ALWAYS last with some sob story about not having time to get her info together. Already had my annual conversation with her (over an hour on the phone) and I still have no info. It also takes her months to pay me. I have decided that I will not be taking her call when it comes in around April 13. Just not worth the aggravation.

Gail

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Just wondering when do you quit doing tax returns?? I find myself receiving tons of calls just days before the deadline, but I think this year I might disconnect my phone April 13 - 15, I rather lose these clients then work my butt off then have them pay me months later. What are other tactics you use, share your story.

I am learning to take care of myself better in regard to PITA clients. I have two LLC's here where the one getting the records together sent me this spreadsheet last week with crap lumped together, like "taxes" which consisted of my fees, sales tax remitted to state of TN, penalties, interest, etc. I told her, in great detail, how to get it together by category (just like I do every year) and have been waiting for over a week. Today she e-mails me that she'll try to get it to me by Monday. I just e-filed their extension requests. Even if I get the returns done, and believe me, I won't work overtime on them, they won't get them till first of May.

I expect to see a big rush of fools around April 10 (hey, that's Good Friday), they will get extensions just like always. I don't know why they even bother to bring their stuff in, somehow they feel better that it's here or something.

I agree, I don't really care if I lose these clients.

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I'd say two things. One, it's good for your spirits to fire at least three PITA clients each year.

That said, it's not bad to have some of those procrastinations as clients, as long as you handle them right.

One, you file extensions, absolutely.

Two, you charge extra to anyone who does not have their data to you by the end of March, at the very latest, middle of March is my cutoff for normal fee.

Third, you do not give them ANYTHING except the extension until you are PAID IN FULL, unless they have a refund and you are using Fee-Collect.

There is no excuse for someone making you wait for your fee any longer than that. And those who owe, who can not pay out of their refund, are the ones you should collect in advance of giving them anything. And don't feel bad that you are giving them a higher fee, part of that is for having to wait to get paid, after all.

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My clients were all informed in January that my office was closing on April 13th. My children are more important to me than my clients and they are on Spring Break. They are growing up too fast and I want to enjoy them now. I will try to get those done that call now, but if not, an extension is what it will be.

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My clients were all informed in January that my office was closing on April 13th. My children are more important to me than my clients and they are on Spring Break. They are growing up too fast and I want to enjoy them now. I will try to get those done that call now, but if not, an extension is what it will be.

Amen to that, I haven't been spending anytime with my 5 month daughter and I feel so guilty.

Marco

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I quit around Oct 14.

Between now and Apr 15 I won't complete a large number of returns - mainly I just prepare extensions and complete some of the simpler returns when I have time. I consider it a well-organized tax season when I spend Apr 14 -15 reviewing extensions and making sure I didn't miss anything. And of course if a last-minute emergency comes up I can give it the amount of time needed to get a reliable extension prepared for him. The biggest treat is taking my wife out to dinner the evening of Apr 15 when everybody assumes I'm slaving away at the office.

Unless you close your office after Apr 15, I believe procrastinators can be a good source of income. You just have to control the process and not let the clients dictate your agenda or work schedule.

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Agree with John, need a cutoff date.

I don't guarantee a return will be completed if it comes into my office after March 31st, although if I can complete them I will.

And the last 2 days are EXTENSIONS and EMERGENCIES ONLY!

But I don't quit after Oct 14th as rest of the year is IRS Rep and Tax Court! Much more fun and better income too!

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I'm actually slowing down now. Most of the folks left are going on extension -- I'm missing data and for whatever reason they can't get it to me.

And there's going to be one of the "Tea Party" events in Boston on the 15th; I'm taking my younger girl out of school (and my older one if she can get off of work) and we're going in for it. My husband is going to try to join us as well. Great way to finish off the tax season!

Catherine

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joelgilb make a great point about not quitting Oct 14. I work year-round as well, but my answer related to when I quit preparing personal returns. And then I remembered that last year that wasn't even true. A couple of my hard-core procrastinators didn't get their info to me until Nov. And of course there's all that odd-ball stuff that you put off until the end of tax season that gets crammed into Nov - Dec.

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My clients seem frantic for me to finish their returns before 15 April and I stop working. I don't stop working. There's extensions and fiscal year clients and people who forgot/couldn't get it together and new clients and estimated tax payments to recompute as situations change and bookkeeping and courses to take and that issue I promised to research further after tax season and....

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Well we close our doors April 14th and don't open back up until the last week in April. The accountant that I work for goes to the coast for two weeks on April 14th. He is 71 and slowing down. We mostly do returns for long time clients. Only new ones we get are their children and grandchildren. He only works part-time the rest of the year. His family lives at the coast and he is only here full-time Jan-April.

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For years I have closed on April 14th. I use to hang extensions in a box on my door, but quit that when it was so easy to file one on line. Today is my cutoff day...no new clients...only extensions. I have come to find out over the past 35 years that the same ones are always the same one that are always late. They are retired, have had all there 1099's since Jan. 31, and are just sitting on them procrastinating. I have made them file extensions and they only prolongs them more. Let them know that you will not be available for this again and either they will get a (LITTLE) better or go somewhere else.

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This is my 27th year - -about 9 years ago - -after preparing 640 tax returns ALL BY MYSELF - -I decided that they were either going to carry me out with a toe tag or a white coat - - -I "retired" - - - -yep - - said farewell to 500 of them and kept 140 - -mostly family, elderly, plumbers, contractors, auto guys - -AND they guy who can write a prescription if needed.

And - -along the way - - - I missed a LOT of spring breaks with the kids - -worked every day for the whole tax season - - -somehow managed to get food on the table most nights - - AND NEVER - - -NEVER filed an extension - - -EVER !!!!!

March 1st - -sent out reminders to notify that there NO appointments after 4/13 - - EVERY year - - - amazing - - they had to be told that there were a LOT of them - -and only 1 of me. They think it's cute - - -and have NO idea that they are not as special as they think they are!!! I currently have 6 people who have not shown up - - - -but I am confident they will - -if they don't - -they can go to H&R !!

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