Planning ideas from Form 1040 (and beyond)
 

Planning ideas from Form 1040 (and beyond)

Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, is one of the most important documents that CPAs who do tax work will encounter. In addition to providing a view of the current tax situation, the form also provides insights into planning opportunities, and CPAs may want to make a Form 1040 review one of the first steps in a new client engagement.

“The 1040 always tells us a lot about the personality of a client,” said Alpa Patel, CPA, tax partner in the Atlanta office of Charlotte, N.C.-based DHG. “It gives a lot of insight into the individual and their preferences.”

For instance, in one case, Patel and her colleagues noted that a client had Schedule C income but was not contributing to a SEP IRA. After pointing this out, the CPAs helped the client set up the account and take advantage of the above-the-line deduction.

Speaking at the AICPA ENGAGE 2018 conference on Tuesday in Las Vegas, Patel and her colleague Tara Thomas, CPA, senior tax manager at DHG, highlighted some of the ways CPAs can use clients’ tax filings to uncover planning strategies. Read more on the Journal of Accountancy.