- Virtual Accounting
- Virtual CFO
- Company Tax Advisory
- Individual Tax and Advisory
- Small Business Advisory
- CPA Firm Services
We welcome your questions. Simply contact us here and we’ll respond quickly. For your convenience, we’ve also collected our most Frequently Asked Questions and included them on this page. To see the answers to the questions, simply click on the arrows.
Q: Why choose a small CPA firm for your accounting needs?
A: Greater involvement of management; you get to work with the decision maker in the firm.
Flexibility and ingenuity that give a smaller practice an edge in facing your unique management challenges.
Q: What is the right organizational structure for my new company?
A: There’s a lot to consider in starting your own business: developing a business plan, obtaining sufficient funding, marketing and a host of other concerns. Also critical is determining the organizational structure that best suits the business, because it will impact operating efficiency, the way you report income, the taxes you pay and your personal liability. There are four basic types to choose from:
- Sole Proprietorship
- Partnership — General and Limited
- Corporation — S Corporation and C Corporation
- Limited Liability Company (LLC)
To make an informed decision, you must consider income tax law and tax rates, as well as issues such as transferability, control and potential legal liability. These matters likely will be complicated, and errors can be costly. That’s why it’s important to do research and seek out the advice of a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) who can help you understand how business structure impacts your organization’s bottom line.
Q: What is the difference between an accountant and a Certified Public Accountant (CPA)?
A: Not all accountants can call themselves CPAs. A CPA is an accountant who has been licensed by the state. CPAs are granted the designation only after they’ve passed the Uniform CPA Exam. The exam is comprised of four parts and is administered by the State Board of Accountancy. Eligible candidates must also graduate with a baccalaureate or master’s degree from an accredited college or university and complete at least 24 semester credits. The academic requirements for admission to the CPA examination in the state of Ohio are 150 semester college credits, 24 of which must be accounting courses above the introductory level and 24 in business courses.
Q: Why choose a Certified Public Accountant (CPA)?
A: The CPA credential is a distinction that sets one apart from other accounting professionals. CPAs bring unique value to any engagement – value that stems from additional education, training and commitment to objectivity, ethics, integrity, independence, expertise and lifelong learning that are the hallmarks of a CPA.
Q: How do I know how much I will owe in taxes?
A: This is not always an easy answer and depends on many factors. However, a great resource to assist you in estimating your annual tax obligations is The Total Tax Insights™ Calculator. The calculator is not a tax preparation tool, nor is it a substitute for the trusted financial and tax advice of a CPA. It has been developed to give you, the taxpayer, greater clarity about the overall taxes you pay and an enhanced awareness of the need for financial planning. The tax calculation is an approximation and not an exact amount. https://www.totaltaxinsights.org/Calculator
Q: Don’t I just need a CPA at tax time?
A: All year round, events such as buying/selling a home, marriage, college, retirement planning, starting a business, getting/losing a job can affect your finances. A CPA can help you see the big picture. Financial matters can get complicated quickly. That’s why a CPA is always there for you. If you have any questions or concerns, just let your CPA know about it. Keeping in touch with your CPA throughout the year helps you keep on top of it all, and makes it easier around tax time. America counts on CPAs.
Q: What is the difference between a Compilation, a Review and an Audit?
A: The level of service is determined by your needs as the client, and what your creditors and/or investors require. The higher the level of service required, the more time the CPA needs to complete the engagement and therefore the more costly the engagement. While privately held companies opt for compiled or reviewed statements, credit agreements with lenders often require audited statements.
Compiled financial statements represent the most basic level of service CPAs provide with respect to financial statements.
Reviewed financial statements provide the user with comfort that, based on the accountant’s review, the accountant is not aware of any material modifications that should be made to the financial statements for the statements to be in conformity with the applicable financial reporting framework.
Audited financial statements provide the user with the auditor’s opinion that the financial statements are presented fairly, in all material respects, in conformity with the applicable financial reporting framework.
Q: What can a CPA do for my small business?
A: As a small-business owner or manager, you have many responsibilities to ensure that your business is profitable and successful. But you don’t have to go it alone. That’s where a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) can be an essential partner: A CPA can help you establish effective business operations and plan for profitability. In addition, a CPA can assist you in setting short- and long-term strategies tailored to your business.
A CPA’s broad business knowledge and financial expertise make him or her a valuable, trusted advisor for financial and tax planning, business valuation, accounting services and setting and meeting your business-growth goals. A CPA is one asset you can’t afford to do without as you plan, run and grow your small business. Although not all CPAs can offer all of the services discussed here, each CPA or CPA firm offers a different mix of services.
Q: As a small business owner, do I need to worry about the new health care law requirements?
A: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 requires “large” employers to offer health insurance to their employees or be subject to a financial penalty. While the penalty provisions don’t apply until 2014, business owners may need to begin planning now in order to avoid the penalties. The law’s definition of a large employer is a business that employs at least 50 full-time equivalent employees during the preceding calendar year (2013).
You may be surprised to learn that full-time employees are individuals who work at least 30 hours per week. In addition, in determining whether an employer has met the 50-employee threshold, part-time workers must be counted, as well as employees who work for related entities. Your CPA can help determine whether your workforce qualifies you as a large business.
Q: What is a virtual CPA firm?
A: A virtual CPA is simply a modern version of the traditional CPA who leverages technology to provide CPA services with anytime, anywhere access to financial information, which assists you in making timely strategic decisions. Virtual CPAs are an emerging market in the CPA profession and are providers of web-based, bookkeeping and accounting solutions to individuals and small business owners. No matter where you are located in the United States, our virtual CPA team can do everything an on-site bookkeeper or accountant would do at a fraction of the cost.
Working with a virtual CPA firm is easy. Provide us with your bank statements, invoices, receipts and other documents. If scanning your documents, you may upload your files using our convenient web-based interface, or you can email, fax or mail us the documents. We process your scanned documents and perform bookkeeping and accounting tasks to your unique needs and specifications securely.
Q: How will a virtual CPA firm benefit me or my business?
A: There are too many to innumerate, but here is a list of some major benefits:
- It is more economical – no employee benefits to pay, office space to maintain, or overhead.
- Frees you from worrying about employee turnover.
- Lessens the burden of accounting technology headaches – no hardware or software upgrades.
- On-demand CPA expertise is only a phone call away – access to high level accounting and financial advice.
- Peace of mind with the same data security banks provide and automatic data backups.
Q: What is the difference between outsourced accounting services and outsourced CFO services?
A: Outsourced accounting services, often referred to as bookkeeping, include technical tasks often requiring paraprofessionals to perform the services, and include the following:
- Accounts Receivable (maintaining & setting up clients, billing and invoicing, creating AR aging reports, etc.)
- Accounts Payable (maintaining and setting up vendors, paying approved invoices, creating AP aging reports, etc.)
- Bank Reconciliations
- Expense Tracking
- Time and Materials Tracking
A: Outsourced CFO services are provided by professional accountants and CPAs and include advanced management and analytical services to assist you in making strategic decisions for your company. These services include the following:
- Financial Analysis
- Budget planning and guidance
- Budget-to-actual analysis (monthly or quarterly)
- Profitability analysis (projects, departments or the whole enterprise)
- Advanced spreadsheet preparation and analysis
- Regular financial status reports for upper management/owners
- Fixed asset depreciation schedules and reporting on all equipment
- Advanced management reporting
- GAAP compliance
- Business consulting and planning services
Q: What are some typical situations in which outsourcing your accounting or choosing a virtual CPA firm makes sense?
A: In many businesses the owner/manager may not want employees (even an accountant) to have access to the company’s financials. By taking advantage of a virtual CPA for bookkeeping, bank reconciliation functions, etc., the owner/manager keeps her data private and accurate at the same time.
When a start-up company or any other business needs to focus time, money and energy on customers and its core business, accounting tasks still need to be accurate, timely and also include understandable reports. But these tasks are often outside the skills or interests of the key employees who started the company. Having a full capability virtual CPA, while saving costs, adds high value to any company.
As many employers are not accountants themselves, it becomes challenging to hire the right bookkeeper, CPA or CFO. Using a virtual CPA’s services removes the hire and retain burden. In small- or medium-sized businesses it can be difficult to afford all of the accounting expertise you need as it is both difficult to find and very expensive. This is especially true when the specific knowledge is only needed a few times a year. Your virtual CPA solution means you have the entire resources of a virtual CPA firm and its CPAs and CFOs available when you need them and only when you need them.