They’re not just any 90 days, they are the most arduous, stressful, and yes, even sometimes rewarding days of our lives. Our clients rely on us the most during this period, and we have the power to deliver both good and bad news on a daily basis. Helping a client through the good and the bad is just part of the job. The relationship built is one based on mutual trust. This trust gives us the opportunity to stand beside a client as they learn, grow, stand, and sometimes fall. The ability to help a client in this way is very rewarding, and is a big reason why many of us became CPAs.
Typically, the “filing season” begins in mid-January with year-end payroll reporting, and by the first week of February, information starts to trickle in such that by the last couple weeks of February, papers are flying. This year was different in a couple ways. Levin Swedler added new partner Kevin Crum, to become Levin Swedler Crum as of January 1. If moving, organizing, and trying to learn to work together under different conditions wasn’t enough for our now 18 member firm, our beloved lawmakers felt the need to “tweak” the rules. At the last minute. At the VERY last minute. Did I mention that they did it AT THE LAST MINUTE?! The work that would normally flow freely by the end of February finally hit our doors in the last two weeks of March.
Most of the staff here has been through several tax seasons. This expertise and repetition brings a familiarity that can provide comfort. The “hump” SHOULD hit somewhere around March 15 – 20. The days leading up to the “hump” are some of the most difficult as 55 – 60+ hour weeks begin to wear on everyone. Tempers get shorter. Sleep comes far less easily. But once we round that curve, and get over that “hump”, it becomes a downhill ride on a roller coaster. The last few weeks pass quickly because of this downhill ride. The impending deadline is within reach, and the rush of reaching that goal is exhilarating. At least, that’s the comfort that we have come to expect. However, because of the changes to the tax forms and the delays in information flow that were created this year, the “hump” never came. We experienced a continuous climb this year. Despite all the roadblocks thrown our way, surprisingly, the number of extensions that were filed was similar to those of prior years. Much to our great relief, April 16 did finally come.
To all of the clients we know and serve, thank you for the opportunity to work with you. We are here for you during the other 275 days of the year as well, and we wish you the very best in the months to come!
Written by: Kathryn M. Drake, CPA