While professionals in all walks of life are prone to swap views on the relative merits of their tools of the trade, among CPA tax preparers, tax return preparation software generates often extensive and ardent discussion. Return preparers depend on their software to accurately apply U.S. federal and state tax laws, a highly complex procedural and computational task. So the The Tax Adviser and JofA are pleased once again to facilitate and, hopefully, distill this shop talk, with our annual survey of preparers’ ratings, likes, and dislikes of their tax preparation software.
We also asked for a third year about clients’ tax-related identity theft and saw, for the second year in a row, a sharp decrease in reported incidence of this problem from the 2016 tax season, when it was reported by nearly 60% of respondents (see the sidebar “Taxpayer ID Theft Further Recedes,” at the bottom of this article). And, looking ahead, we asked whether respondents had discussed with clients selected new provisions of the tax reform legislation known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), P.L. 115-97, learning which were uppermost in CPAs’ client communications during the 2018 tax season (see the sidebar “TCJA Provisions Discussed With Clients,” at the bottom of this article).