Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Microsoft’s Small Business Accounting 2006 Update

I was reading recently in Accounting Technology about be experiences of my fellow colleagues regarding their experiences with clients inquiring about MS Small Business Accounting (MSSBA) and just like myself many have not received the inquiries that Microsoft was probably hoping for. Most of the comments from their clients were “Microsoft makes a small business software package!?!?” I am here to say I receive the same responses when I notify people of their software offering. When doing a recent seminar for small businesses, I noticed that the attendees all looked at me with blank amazement that there was something else out there for small businesses. With further research into the product, I believe many small businesses may find a benefit in MSSBA.

For the small business owner that requires an accounting software package that seamlessly integrates into all their other Microsoft programs, MSSBA will be a great fit. It also will help the small business owner that is moving from “shoebox” recordkeeping to a more secure technological simple process.

For the accounting professional new to MSSBA, Microsoft is now offering CPE credits for certification on MSSBA, in an effort to get more accountants to become familiar with the software. I recently received information regarding this new update via Microsoft’s Professional Accountants Network (MPAN). These initiatives may allow Microsoft to take a piece of the small business market away from Intuit (QuickBooks, Quicken) and I am eager to see how this plays out.

For information check out:

Keep Your Business In Synergy

Brian N. Stovall
The Brico Group, Inc.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Found Your Refund Yet???

With this year's tax season over for most taxpayers, many are shifting focus from gathering their tax information to locating that elusive refund from the IRS. If you fall into this category, the IRS has a link on their site for you. Simply click on the "Where's My Refund" link on the IRS website ( Information that you will need is your SSN, your amount of your tax refund, the date that your return was sent and how it was sent (paper or electronically).

The IRS does not give definite time frame for your refund, but typically it can take about two weeks for processing if you e-filed and up to a month if the return was paper filed. For more information regarding how long it takes for your refund to arrive you can also take a look at the IRS Tax Topic 152 - "Refunds -How long they should take at the following link.

Until next time........keep your business in synergy

Brian N. Stovall
The Brico Group, Inc.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

More Woes for America’s Tax Preparation Firms????

Here is a little information for all of you out there that have used or plan to use a tax preparation firm like H&R Block, Jackson Hewitt, or Liberty Tax that may make you want to question the accuracy of their services. In my NSA Special Alert e-mail I just received, it appears that the Senate Finance Committee chairman Charles Grassley (R-IA) is inquiring into the business models, training, and compensation of the major tax preparation firms. This is due to the recent release of the General Accounting Office’s (GAO) report that uncovered dishonesty, inaccurate information, and poor service provided by tax preparation firms.

This is all in the midst of the potential passing of the current legislation, the Taxpayer Protection and Assistance Act (S.832) which would require the registration of all non Circular 230 paid tax preparers (Non CPA’s, EA’s and public accountants). This is something that the average consumer must keep in mind when relying on a tax preparation firm to prepare and file their taxes. Many times these tax franchises are owned and operated by CPA’s, EA’s, and other Circular 230 tax professionals, but sometimes the staffs are not as fully trained. Be sure to do your due diligence when selecting a tax preparation firm and remember that the tax responsibility ALWAYS falls upon the tax payer.

To your prosperity

Brian N. Stovall
The Brico Group, Inc.