Should I hire a CPA because of the tax plan?


Q. I usually do my own taxes but I’m not sure how to handle this because of the new tax plan. My deductions are very close to the standard deduction amount, and I’m not sure which way to go. Should I hire a CPA, what should it cost and where do I find someone reputable?
— Taxpayer

A. If you want to remain a do-it-yourselfer, we have good news.

If you have been comfortable doing your own return, you should be able to continue doing so even with the new tax law, said Michael Karu, a certified public accountant with Levine, Jacobs & Co. in Livingston.

There are some big changes, and depending on the specifics of your return, some may apply to you.

“Remember that you can take the greater of your itemized deductions or the standard deduction,” Karu said. “If you use tax preparation software, it should walk you through it.”

But if you are uncomfortable with preparing your return or you simply can’t invest the time and effort, using a CPA is the way to go, he said.

What will it cost? That depends.

“Most CPAs charge based on the time expended and many have a minimum charge,”: Karu said. “If you have friends or family members with more complicated tax returns, ask them for referrals.”

You also can go to this website, maintained through the New Jersey Society of CPAs, to find a professional to work with you.

Email your questions to moc.p1600655358leHye1600655358noMJN1600655358@ksA1600655358.