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Tax Time is the Right Time for Financial Planning

If you’re like any of the CPAs I know, you’re probably fishing receipts from shoeboxes right about now, brewing coffee like it’s a second job and greeting the sun most days from your office chair.

It is, after all, that most taxing of seasons: tax season.

But in those long hours and rigorous reviews you’re also getting fresh insight into the lives of your clients – insight into their incomes, spending habits, investments and life events. That’s why tax season is a great gateway to financial planning. And why CPAs are uniquely positioned to excel as financial planners.

Investment News recently highlighted the growing ranks of CPAs in financial planning. In part, they’ve been prompted by clients who are turning to their trusted advisors for help navigating a broader array of financial decisions amid market volatility and tax uncertainty.

The AICPA’s Personal Financial Planning section has put together a wealth of resources to help you help your clients this tax season. Three experienced CPA Personal Financial Specialists recently produced a podcast to help tax practitioners identify planning opportunities. We have a comprehensive checklist that you can also use as you go through tax returns and a financial planning webcast we recorded last year that provides a deepdive into the 1040. For those who would like to make financial planning a permanent part of their practices, we have web resources detailing the pathway. And we recently announced a new program with step-by-step guidance on adding financial planning.

Our goal is to help you provide ever more valuable services that strengthen your relationships with clients. If there are additional resources you would find helpful, please add to the comments below or contact the PFP section anytime at [email protected].

We look forward to hearing your ideas, and until then wish you all the best this tax season. 

Andrea Millar, CPA/PFS, Sr Technical Manager - PFP, American Institute of CPAs. Andrea leads the AICPA Personal Financial Division. Her responsibilities include working with the PFP Executive and PFS Credential committees to drive the advocacy, education and other initiatives on behalf of the 7,500 AICPA members who specialize in providing estate, retirement, tax, investment and insurance advice to their individual clients.

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