Taxpayers turning to accountants to help navigate new tax law

Consumers are confused this year about how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will affect them and are asking tax professionals for assistance with their taxes, according to a new survey.

The survey, by the personal financial management platform Nummo, polled 2,000 consumers about their taxes. Amid reports that tax refunds are down this year, 70 percent of the respondents said they expect a refund, but more than one-third said they don’t know how much they will receive.

While 55 percent of the survey respondents indicated they have an understanding of how the new tax law would affect them, 47 percent of them said they would work with a certified tax preparer if it would help them interpret exactly how the new tax laws would affect them.

In addition, while 43 percent of the respondents said they are currently working with a tax preparer, more than 60 percent said it is very important and would prefer to work with a human/certified person on their tax return.

Fifty-five percent of the respondents cited convenience as the number 1 reason for using a tax preparation service, while 44 percent cited personalized service as the top reason to use an accountant, But the number 1 reason for working with a preparer is to provide a better understanding of how the tax law would affect them.

Consumers indicated they are still open to using an accountant despite several reasons:

  • 58 percent of the survey respondents said their tax return isn’t complicated enough or they didn’t need professional advice;
  • 39 percent of respondents said an accountant is probably too expensive or that the service probably wouldn’t justify the cost, but 54 percent of respondents said they would be open to meeting with an accountant if it was affordable;
  • 65 percent of the poll respondents indicated they are not interested in receiving tax planning advice throughout the year.
Tax season use of accountants

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