Lost your accounting records? – Now What?

Before you hand over your receipts to someone to do your taxes make sure you check them out.  Get references and do some due diligence.  If you have read my previous blogs on receipts you know that they should be treated like gold.  Now it is time for a horror story.  It’s not even Halloween yet, yikes.

Client came to me with CRA notional assessments in hand and a bill for almost $200,000.  The CRA also want the actual returns to be filed by the client ASAP (which in CRA speak means NOW!!!!!)  The problem is he has no records because the last bookkeeper he used buggered off, didn’t leave a forwarding address, and more importantly did not return his records.  How do you file accurate tax returns without records to use to prepare them?  Well it is doable but tuff.  There is also the small matter that without receipts the likelihood of surviving an audit are not good.

I share this information so that the next time you decide to go with the cheapest option to get your taxes done that you will do so with your eyes wide open.  You may not like my prices (I am not cheap), but your records will NOT go missing, I will not move without a forwarding address, and most importantly you will not get screwed by the CRA simply because you trusted the wrong person and no longer have your receipts. 

I submit to you that I am more expensive than the options available on Kijiji, but I am a heck of a lot cheaper than the $200,000 tax bill you can end up with if your receipts disappear.  Frankly the extra money is worth the peace of mind you will have after reading this blog.  Just a further FYI, no I am not making this stuff up.  All my stories are 100% true, and based on actual client’s experiences.  I have to keep client anonymity as a priority, but I believe that the world needs to know that bad things can happen when you cut corners just to save a few bucks.  Like with most cases saving a few dollars usually cost you way more than you can ever afford, and cause you more problems than you could ever have dreamed possible.

Bottom line.  You get what you pay for.  Do your due diligence and protect yourself.