Choosing a tax consultant isn't that straightforward.
For starters, you have to ensure he's registered with SARS. This means he must be a member of a SARS-recognised controlling body.
Another equally important step in choosing a tax consultant is making sure he possesses the right qualities.
But, before we get to the qualities, let's first define what a tax consultant is and what he's not.
What is a tax consultant?
A tax consultant, also known as a tax advisor or tax practitioner, is trained in tax law and has a thorough knowledge of their countries' tax system. They offer their financial expertise by consulting with individuals and businesses to assist in calculating and submitting accurate tax returns, explains Cape Town Accountant, Brett Dirmeik, founder of Dirmeik Consulting.
What are the qualities of a good tax consultant?
Cowsultants.com outlines various things that a tax accountant should possess:
#1: Specialisation in one or more areas of tax is an important requirement you must look for. There are many tax consultants who provide specialised services. They are masters of the various aspects of tax, like, company tax and individual tax. You may want to consider this.
#2: Knowledge: The tax field is too large. There are few persons who have a great knowledge about the tax. The knowledge about tax is an important characteristic that a tax consultant should possess, says Cowsultants.com.
Essentially, if you're looking for a good tax consultant, the knowledge about the taxation should be the first requirement of you.
#3: Experience: Whenever you're about to hire a tax accountant, look for a well experienced person. Make sure he has a few years of experience as a practitioner.
#4: Affordable: The fee of the tax consultant is a major point of consideration. For example; the payment can be according to the services and the amount of tax to be paid.
Where can you find a tax consultant?
One way to find a reputable tax consultant is to log on to the site for the South African Institute of Tax Practitioners.
On the site, you'll find a tab where you can search for a compliant, trusted and accredited tax consultant in your area.
The site also allows you to verify that your tax consultant is compliant with the Tax Administration Act and that he's registered.
Here's the golden rule when it comes to choosing a tax consultant
'Care should be taken when finding the correct tax advisor for you or your business. You're paying for a consultant to handle your tax responsibly and accurately, not someone who practices tax evasion. Make sure your tax practitioner is registered with SARS and part of a professional body,' says Dirmeik.