Choosing an Accountant at Tax Time – Your Last-Minute Guide to Smoothly Filing Your Tax Return

June 30, 2023by Mahdi

Tax time is upon us once again, and every year it seems to sneak up faster than a wave crashing onto the sandy shores of Bondi Beach. Whether you’re looking to maximise your deductions or file last year’s tax return you may find yourself in the situation where you need to choose an accountant at the last minute. Don’t panic! In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of choosing the right accountant to ensure a smooth and stress-free tax filing experience.

Assessing Your Needs and Priorities

Before diving into the sea of accountants, it’s important to take a moment to thoroughly assess your needs and priorities. By considering the following factors, you’ll be better equipped to make an informed decision:

Complexity of Your Tax Situation

Take the time to determine the complexity of your tax situation. Are you a salaried employee with straightforward deductions, or do you have multiple income sources, investments, and intricate deductions? Understanding the complexity of your tax situation will help you identify an accountant with the necessary expertise to handle your specific needs. They should be well-versed in the intricacies of tax laws and regulations relevant to your situation.

Complexity of Your Tax Situation:

Communication and Availability

Consider how important clear communication and availability are to you during the tax filing process. Reflect on your preferred mode of interaction, whether it’s face-to-face meetings, phone calls, or online communication. Assessing your communication needs will enable you to find an accountant who can accommodate your preferred means of contact. Effective and timely communication is vital for a smooth and successful collaboration with your accountant.


Reputation and Experience

Although you might be searching for an accountant at the last minute, that doesn’t mean you should settle for just anyone. Take the time to research accountants with a solid reputation and ample experience in handling individual tax filings. Seek recommendations from trusted sources such as friends, family, or colleagues. Additionally, explore online reviews and testimonials to gather insights into their professionalism and expertise. Choosing an accountant with a proven track record will provide you with the confidence and peace of mind you need during tax season.

Reputation and Experience:

The Last-Minute Search

Okay, so you’ve realised that you’re in a time crunch to find an accountant, but don’t worry! Follow these steps to streamline your last-minute search and find the right professional to assist you:


Referrals and Recommendations

Tap into your network and reach out to trusted individuals for referrals and recommendations. Ask friends, family, or coworkers if they have an accountant they highly recommend and can vouch for. Personal recommendations often lead to discovering excellent accounting professionals who excel in their field.

Referrals and Recommendations:

Online Search

Leverage the power of online directories and search engines to find accountants in your local area. Look for accountants who specialise in individual tax filings and have a track record of positive customer reviews and satisfaction. Don’t forget to include your location in the search to find accountants who are conveniently accessible for in-person meetings if that’s your preferred mode of communication.


Initial Phone Consultations

Once you have a shortlist of potential accountants, take the initiative to schedule initial phone consultations with each of them. During these consultations, discuss your specific tax situation, inquire about their experience in handling similar cases, and ask about their availability. This conversation will give you a sense of their professionalism, communication skills, and whether they align with your needs and preferences.

Initial Phone Consultations:

Making the Final Decision

After gathering information and having initial consultations, it’s time to make the final decision and choose the accountant who will assist you in filing your tax return. Consider the following factors in greater detail:

Expertise and Specialization

When making your decision, prioritise an accountant who possesses expertise in individual tax filings and has experience dealing with situations similar to yours. Their specialised knowledge will ensure they understand the intricacies of your specific tax return and can provide valuable insights to maximise your deductions and minimise your tax liability. Look for professionals who have a proven track record in handling cases similar to yours.

Expertise and Specialization:

Communication Style

Reflect on the communication styles and compatibility you observed during your initial consultations with each accountant. It’s crucial to choose an accountant with whom you feel comfortable discussing your financial matters. Clear and effective communication is key in ensuring that you and your accountant are on the same page throughout the tax filing process. Additionally, consider their ability to explain complex tax concepts in a way that you understand, as this will contribute to a smoother and more efficient collaboration.



While cost shouldn’t be the sole determining factor, it’s essential to consider the pricing structure of the accountants you are evaluating. Inquire about their fees and ensure they align with your budget. Remember, you’re seeking a balance between quality service and affordability. Be wary of extremely low-cost options, as they may not provide the level of expertise and attention to detail that your tax situation requires. Look for an accountant who offers transparent and competitive pricing based on the complexity of your tax return.


Providing Necessary Information

Once you have selected your accountant, the next step is to gather and provide them with the necessary information to prepare your tax return. Being organised and thorough in this process will contribute to a smoother and more accurate filing experience. Ensure you have the following information readily available:

Income Statements

Gather all relevant income statements, such as payment summaries, group certificates, and any other documentation that indicates your earnings. This includes income from employment, investments, rental properties, and other sources. Providing accurate and comprehensive income statements will enable your accountant to assess your tax situation accurately.

Income Statements:

Deductions and Expenses

Compile all documentation supporting your deductions and expenses. This includes receipts for work-related expenses, such as vehicle expenses, home office expenses, and professional development costs. Additionally, gather documentation for charitable contributions, medical expenses, and any other eligible deductions you may have. Organising these documents will facilitate the identification of deductions and ensure compliance with tax regulations.


Personal Information

Have your personal information ready for your accountant. This includes your Tax File Number (TFN), bank account details for potential refunds or payments, and any other relevant identification information. Providing accurate personal information will help streamline the process and ensure your tax return is prepared accurately and efficiently.

Personal Information:

The Last-Minute Filing Sprint

Now that you have your chosen accountant on board and all the necessary information in hand, it’s time to embark on the last-minute filing sprint and ensure your tax return is filed on time. Pay attention to the following steps in greater detail:

Provide Prompt Responses

Throughout the tax filing process, it’s essential to be responsive and provide prompt answers to any queries or requests for additional information from your accountant. Timely communication is crucial to maintaining the momentum and efficiency of the tax preparation process. By promptly addressing any queries or requests, you can ensure a smoother and more streamlined experience, reducing the risk of unnecessary delays.

Provide Prompt Responses:

Review the Draft

Once your accountant has prepared the draft tax return, take the time to review it carefully. Pay close attention to the details and ensure that you understand all aspects of the return. If anything is unclear or requires further explanation, don’t hesitate to ask your accountant for clarification. This is your opportunity to ensure that all information is accurate and complete, and to address any discrepancies or omissions. Provide any additional information or corrections promptly to facilitate the finalisation of your tax return.


Sign and Submit

Once you are satisfied with the final tax return, it’s time to sign the necessary documents and authorise your accountant to lodge the return on your behalf. Review the return one last time to ensure all necessary signatures and authorizations are in place. By signing and submitting your tax return promptly, you can meet the filing deadline and avoid any potential penalties or late fees.

Sign and Submit:

Learn and Plan Ahead

As you wrap up your last-minute tax filing adventure, take the opportunity to learn from the experience and plan ahead for future tax seasons. Consider the following steps to improve your tax preparation process:


Start Early

To avoid the stress of last-minute filings, aim to start your tax preparation early. Develop a habit of keeping track of your income, expenses, and deductions throughout the year. By maintaining accurate records and staying organised, you can make the next tax season a breeze. Consider using digital tools or apps to streamline record-keeping and simplify the retrieval of necessary information when tax time rolls around.

Start Early:

Maintain Good Records

Establish a system for organising your financial records and documents. Keep all relevant documentation in a safe and easily accessible place. This includes income statements, receipts for expenses, investment statements, and any other relevant financial records. By maintaining good records throughout the year, you can avoid the last-minute scramble to find and compile necessary information when filing your tax return.


Regular Communication

Nurture a proactive and ongoing relationship with your chosen accountant. Regularly communicate with them throughout the year, not just during tax season. Seek their advice and guidance on financial matters, such as optimising deductions, managing investments, or planning for future tax obligations. By maintaining open lines of communication, you can make more informed financial decisions and better prepare for upcoming tax obligations.

Regular Communication:


In conclusion, choosing an accountant at the last minute doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Assess your needs, gather recommendations, and have initial consultations to find the right fit. Be organised, provide necessary information promptly, and communicate effectively with your accountant to ensure a smooth tax filing process. Learn from the experience and plan ahead to avoid the last-minute scramble in future tax seasons. Remember, tax time doesn’t have to be stressful—it can even be a little bit fun!


Amoura Accounting is a leading accounting firm located in Brisbane, Australia. With years of experience and expertise, they provide a range of financial services to help individuals and businesses manage their finances effectively. Their team of skilled and qualified accountants offers a comprehensive range of services, including accounting, bookkeeping, tax planning and preparation, business advisory, and more. They are committed to delivering personalised and tailored solutions to their clients, and their services are designed to help clients achieve their financial goals. Amoura Accounting is dedicated to providing reliable, timely, and accurate financial information and advice to help their clients make informed decisions.

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ABOUTAmour Accountant
Choose the right partner for your finances. Amour Accountants proudly support both individuals and SMEs across Brisbane’s Northside. With a proven track record for diligence and a dedication to the continued success of our clients, we’re a team you can put your trust in, ensuring that you’re always moving towards your financial goals.
ABOUT USAmour Accountant
Choose the right partner for your finances. Amour Accountants proudly support both individuals and SMEs across Brisbane’s Northside. With a proven track record for diligence and a dedication to the continued success of our clients, we’re a team you can put your trust in, ensuring that you’re always moving towards your financial goals.
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© 2022 Amour Accountants. All Rights Reserved. Proudly Developed By Branding Experts.