1. What do you see as the main lesson of last tax season?

The economy and tax law changes make it critical that professionals stay abreast of new tax law. For example, they need to be able to identify clients with special filing or reporting requirements, or clients that qualify for, or may be limited in taking, a special tax credit. Time and resources devoted to tax planning have increased in importance, and the right tools are essential.

2. What trends do you see developing in tax preparation?

1. More refundable personal tax credits with eligibility requirements complicate calculations, and the possibility of larger refunds demands that preparers complete more returns early in the tax season. 2. Electronic processing, obtaining client data, and storage of tax returns and other tax information is becoming more manageable. 3. There is more specialization of services such as financial counseling or working with bankruptcy attorneys to provide tax projection services. 4. President Obama plans many changes in a wide range of areas. 5. Preparers will be expecting their software to offer more in the areas of streamlining workflow, electronic management and storage of documents, the overall tax planning process, and better client connectivity through secure Web portals.

3. What do you have planned for next tax season?

For both the UltraTax CS and GoSystem Tax RS tax preparation systems, development efforts are focusing on improving the workflow for preparers and enhancing the client portal offering. Preparers will be able to submit scanned client source documents to us for processing, and receive back appropriately labeled source documents organized by type and ready for electronic storage. In addition, data electronically extracted off of source documents like W-2s and 1099s can be reviewed and accepted for automatic transfer to the tax prep system. Enhancements to our client portal include the capability to automatically populate the portal with the completed return and copies of the scanned source documents.

The Tax & Accounting business of Thomson Reuters provides tax professionals with a full array of top-rated tax compliance products and services through both the CS Professional Suite, with UltraTax CS, and the Enterprise Suite, with GoSystem Tax RS, a premium, scalable and secure Web-based tax preparation program. These programs both offer integration with other Thomson Reuters programs such as Checkpoint research.

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