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Tax fundamentals CPAs should know

Written on Nov 2, 2023

By Jessica Salerno-Shumaker, OSCPA senior content manager  

Thanks to the internet, there is no shortage of tax advice videos available. But there’s a difference between an entertaining video and comprehensive advice.   

“There's a lot of horrible tax advice out there,” said Mindy Nett, CPA, associate professor in the department of accounting at Kent State University. “I always joke with my students to ignore the TikTok tax advice. Just because someone is saying something on a popular video doesn't make it right.”  

Nett will present a tax fundamentals session at the upcoming MEGA Tax Conference and said they’ll cover various deductions, basic tax credits, tax savings and more.  

There are some fundamental mistakes Nett said she still sees people make when it comes to taxes, especially around found income and crypto transactions. That’s why it’s crucial to understand the basics and stay up to date on any changing legislation.  

And while Nett said she doesn’t anticipate any specific tax laws changing soon, she is interested to see the impact the IRS’s recent hiring surge will have on the upcoming tax season.   

“I have been to several trainings where they have talked about the number of people they are hiring and the areas that they are focusing on,” she said. “Which I think definitely has an impact on what practitioners need to think about in regard to individual tax.”  

She noted the IRS has been more vigilant about recognizing common mistakes, such as when people under or overreport certain items on their taxes. The increase in enforcement could put a new level of scrutiny on both the taxpayer and the preparer to make sure that things are correct. 

“There is planning practitioners can do to help minimize taxable income for a more basic tax preparer,” Nett said. “A lot of times, there's not a whole lot that a middle-class or even upper-middle-class taxpayer can do. But there are things that can help, and hopefully walking away from this and understanding some of those key things can help minimize tax liability.”  

Register for the MEGA Tax Conference today

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