This is the beginning of another tax season and I notice already that some independent preparers are struggling with the increasingly messy topic of client communications. As part of my coaching certification program I am now working with more tax accountants on helping them build their business. So this topic came up a few times already this week. Industry standards suggest that a written engagement agreement should always be used. My engagement agreements are broken into two parts: 1) a Best Practices Agreement, and 2) a Work Plan. Both sections refer to the other as parts of one complete agreement. A sample Best Practices Agreement is available online elsewhere. This blog post below focuses solely on a sample Work Plan.
Subject: work plan for 2021 tax preparation
This confirms that I agreed to compete your (business and/or personal) federal and (states) state income tax returns for the year 2021. This work plan is part of our engagement agreement made on (date).
I received and read (list of documents uploaded).
I did not receive (list of documents expected but not received). In the event this information is not available, I agreed to (describe alternate procedure).
We may need to speak by phone or communicate via text message. We agreed that I may also speak with (names) in the course of this work.
I expect my work to be complete on (date) and I will send draft copies to you through a secure online portal at that time.
I will be available to review the returns with you by telephone; answer any questions or make any corrections. Additionally, you will receive a video summary explanation of my work on these tax returns, including an emphasis on certain matters and recommendations for the future.
Once we have answered all questions and you are satisfied that our work is complete, you will authorize electronic filing. I will confirm acceptance of the filings.
My fee will be $ sent in a separate electronic invoice. It can be paid any way you choose, as long as it is paid prior to the date of filing.