The financial stability of your business may depend on your link with an accountant. Take note of these tips.
The relationship between an entrepreneur and his accountant is like that of a doctor and his patient. In the end, in both cases a person needs to see a professional to treat problems and, above all, prevent.
But the reality is that many times entrepreneurs, especially those who start, tend to neglect the management and control of their income and expenses. The worst: they end up neglecting compliance with their tax obligations. In general, SMEs give priority to hiring a seller than an accountant.
You can no longer afford, if you did, to take only the finances of your business. If you have already made the decision to hire an accountant, you probably have some questions, such as: how do I make sure that it will answer my needs? What services and documents do you have to give me? And what will be my final responsibility?
Here we present a six-point guide on how to manage the relationship with an accountant, according to advice from Eduardo Maubert, director of the Maubert Roura y Asociados office, and Álvaro Cordón, head of Álvaro Cordón y Asociados.
1. Hire an experienced freelancer
There are certain clear requirements that your candidate must meet to guarantee his services:
In addition to being a certified accountant, you need to have certifications from professional associations (such as the Mexican Association of Public Accountants and the Mexican Association of Public Accountants). This allows to verify that it is updated, something fundamental for the continuous fiscal changes that occur.
Among the best sources for hiring is the famous “word of mouth”, that is, the recommendation of a person you trust.
Ask for data that reveals their expertise in the matter, such as growth figures for your market, which fiscal figure is the one that suits you best according to your activity, etc. You can also ask him if he does audits.
The best reference of an accountant is his work. Ask him to provide you with the telephone number of some clients and contact them to ask for their comments.
It is vital that your resume confirms that you have experience with independent clients , and not only in large companies. It is also recommended that you master other professional areas, such as the legal one, because you might need it at some point (imagine if you have a problem with a worker or a partner who wants to leave the company).
2. Seal the relationship with a contract
Once the professional is chosen, a contract for the provision of services must be signed. What they must offer you, at a minimum, is to keep your company's accounting record and calculate your tax obligations. That includes updating you in the modifications in the matter of taxes and supporting you in case of arriving any requirement from the Treasury.
In Eduardo Maubert's opinion, receiving other support depends, to some extent, on the fees. “If the customer wants to pay a minimum amount and deliver only their vouchers, then the dynamics is limited to this, although an accountant can help you in other aspects, such as developing growth strategies, taking payroll, calculating IMSS service payments, etc.” What will be the tasks in which you will be supported should be clear in the contract, as well as the commitments and obligations of both parties.
3. It is customary to keep vouchers
The financial information that your business throws will pay the taxes. That is why it is essential that you have control over it.
The basic documents to be delivered to your accountant are invoices, receipts and all proof of income and expenses, in order and per month.
As a customer you need to receive a list or financial record of the state of the company (business income and expenses) plus a record of the tax payments made by the accountant and their respective receipts (certified by the corresponding authority). Among the taxes you must pay, depending on your activity, are:
Income Tax (ISR): contribution to be made by the perception of income as a natural and legal person, in accordance with the Income Tax Law (ISR). It is paid once a month and to calculate it you have to add all the billing that the client has issued.
Value Added Tax (VAT): is an indirect tax that applies to goods and services produced or marketed by the company. It is also paid once a month and is calculated based on a ratio of everything that was charged.
Single Rate Business Tax (IETU): it is a tax that applies to individuals and corporations, and also taxes profits. If your ISR is higher than the IETU, you will only be creditor to the first.
It takes a periodicity. As an entrepreneur you must demand those papers every month, not every time you remember.
These documents are proof that you complied with the tax obligations, and it should be remembered that in case of any problem, the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit seeks and penalizes the employer, not the accountant. Therefore, the entrepreneur must understand that although he delegates the accounting of the business to a professional, it is he who controls that all the papers and payments are in order.
Take care of your money. Many clients tell the accountant: “You pay my taxes, I give you access to my checking account and carry out the process.” However, according to Álvaro Cordón, a rule that you must abide by is “do not delegate the payment of taxes to anyone”.
“The numbers of the company are the absolute responsibility of the entrepreneur, who needs to be aware. If the accountant did his calculations badly, it is negligence and measures can be taken in this regard, but at the outset who must be aware is the employer. That is why it is said that the relationship between the two is joint, but not solidary, ”added the specialist.
In addition, for no reason can a check be bearer; It must include the name of the institution to avoid a possible diversion of resources.
6. Find out
There are some items that you can deduct for the payment of taxes, such as the purchase of goods that are related to your business activity (for this topic you can consult the SAT page). In terms of invoices (fiscal proof of delivery of a product or service) and expenses, it is essential to consult your accountant about any questions, so he will keep a more accurate financial relationship of your company.
For example: “A normal act in a company is to throw away your garbage, and whoever collects it will charge a certain amount every month. That is a necessary expense for the organization, and even if it is a note in 'insignificant' theory, it must be provided to the accountant, ”he advises. “He with his criteria can then decide whether or not that voucher is used to deduct.”