CPA Recommendations please

15 Replies

@Sharita S.

@Shawn Pottschmidt

I second Dave Nieset. He is a member of the local REIA and is usually our speaker around November to give us insights to prepare for year end taxes.

Dave is actually an Enrolled Agent ....same as @Steven Hamilton II .

Forgive me if you already know this but if you don't, Enrolled Agents are the only federally licensed tax practitioners who specialize in taxation and also have unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before the IRS. 

“Enrolled” means to be licensed to practice by the federal government, and “Agent” means authorized to appear in the place of the taxpayer at the IRS. Only enrolled agents, attorneys, and CPAs have unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before the IRS. Unlike attorneys and CPAs, who are state licensed and who may or may not choose to specialize in taxes, all enrolled agents specialize in taxation and they are licensed at the federal level and can represent taxpayers in all 50 states.

Enrolled Agents know their stuff.  Hats off to both Dave and Steve Hamilton II. They have to go through a book almost the size of the old telephone directories every year I believe just to keep up with all the new "goodies" the IRS comes up with. Dave has brought a copy to the meeting the last two times he spoke.

You should be in good hands with either of these two gentlemen.

I took my CPA exams and you have to go through 6 books the size of an old New York City telephone book. It's not joke. I almost decided to go the EA route instead and lawyers have to go through a library of books to get their degree and take their bar. Don't oversell the EA qualifications. Everyone has to bust their *** to get their certs/degrees/licenses.

@Joe Kim

I was certainly not diminishing other professionals, lol. 

I was just saying that it appears that Dave has to go through a new telephone directory sized book every single year that is loaded with new regulations or changes to this and that and revisions of this and that from everyone's favorite publisher - the IRS. How much fun is that :)

This is every year in addition to the original telephone books he probably had to go through to get the certification the first time round.

Not diminishing.  CPAs need college degrees in accounting in most states.  Enrolled agents do not.  CPAs have continuing ed as well, the phone book of regs for tax is repeatable.  Tax and reg were the two parts of the CPA I passed, but since I changed careers into finance and sales, I didn't do the last two parts.  EAs are specialized in tax, but just like in any profession, there are good and bad EAs like there are good and bad CPAs.  I rather enjoyed tax studies so I can't say it wasn't good or bad.  The regs changes are always band aid fixes from years before.  Its not like they come up with something revolutionary every time.  It is the IRS.  They basically just close loop holes from prior years or give mini breaks to certain areas.  Everyone's got continuing education to do.  CPA is an umbrella that lets you do 99.9% of everything an EA does, but also allows you to do financial audits as well among other things.  Just like in most states, lawyers don't need any additional certification to sell real estate, however real estate agents aren't allowed to represent you in a trial.  Same thing.

Looks like I am in great hands.  @Anthony M. and @Joe Kim .  I have been educated.  The two of you have given me a great deal of information.  I hadn't realized all that was involved.  Makes me feel like I was probably missing out on a whole lot by doing my own taxes.  Hey, when we know better we do better.  I'm on the path to doing better.  Thanks again.


BTW, I lived close by to south bend for 3 years, from 1993-1996.  There was this Italian place called "Spaghetti's" and they had this crunchy garlic with olive oil and bread that they used to serve you before ordering.  Was the most amazing thing.  Are they still there?  I would love a recipe for how they prepared that garlic.  Was so amazing.  Anyways, good luck!! @Sharita S.

@Joe Kim

I googled it and found a Spaghetti Joes Italian Restaurant located at 26222 Edison Rd; South Bend, Indiana 46628. They have a Facebook page with a phone number (I just found out that posting a phone number outside of the marketplace is prohibited since the BP system kicked back my post with the number).  I have never been there. 

If it's them, maybe you can call them and bribe them with the 6 telephone size books of tax and reg books if you still have them and have no use for them, assure them they will be very valuable someday as a relic of historic tax code and exchange them for the recipe :)

@Anthony M.  I don't think its them.  There was no Joe's at the end of it and it was in mishawaka about like a mile away from the mall.  The bread and garlic and the sizzlini.  Was incredible.  That and I used to be on the wall at Wings etc, their wall of flame.  Unfortunately, I have no bribing tools as I discarded that wall of books, a long time ago along with my wall of LSAT study books.  A whole lotta money spent in knowledge I know longer use or remember.  

@Anthony M. Grape sounds VERY familiar.  It was right next to this Mexican place.  Don Pablos or Don Juan's or something like that.  Like about half a mile away on the same street.  I haven't been back to Mishawaka/South Bend in a long time.  Making me nostalgic to go back.  Went to school at Andrews University for a little bit in Berrien Springs, MI, but would always come down to South Bend for food, and I miss the hot dogs at the dollar niles theater.  I miss a lot of things from that area :).  Its a nice trip down memory lane.