People tend to confuse the roles of an accountant and a tax adviser. Many believe that choosing either of the two for their specific needs will make no difference. However, putting accountants and tax advisers in a single frame can backfire as they perform different roles and functions. As a growing business, you’d need the help of both a chartered tax adviser and an accountant to help you with the financial side of things.
Chartered tax advisers & accountants play a fundamental role in streamlining your financial operations. You shouldn’t hesitate to engage their expertise in complex financial issues, as they’ll ensure smooth personal and business financial management.
You need to have a solid understanding of their functions, roles, and abilities to help choose the one that fits your unique needs and requirements. Here we’ll discuss the differences between the two in detail to help you make the right choice.
Accountant in a Nutshell
Accountants are finance professionals responsible for conducting the financial analysis of a company and determining its financial health. They are also required to create year-end statutory financial statements for companies required to publish their year-end accountants to relevant stakeholders.
There are two types of accountants that you need to know about; certified accountants and chartered accountants. The difference between the two is their qualifications and the organisations from where they received their certifications.
Most accountants prefer to have the letters FCA, FCCA or ACA, ACCA after their name. However, they need to pass stringent examinations and complete over 450 hours of relevant professional work experience to use these letters next to their names.
If you’re considering pursuing a chartered accountant qualification, you’ll need to get in touch with The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales (ICAEW) or The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Scotland (ICAS) or the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. These organisations are responsible for conducting examinations and awarding the esteemed chartered accountant qualification.
Certified Accountants need to ace 14 tough exams. They also need to complete their professional development to include certain letters next to their names.
Role of An Accountant
An accountant has some of the most diverse roles in the finance industry. You can go for several specialisations once you complete your accounting qualifications. You can choose to go down the management accountant route or consider becoming a forensic accountant.
The role of an accountant has evolved considerably over the past decade. Their expertise and experience are required in many areas of an organisation. An expert accountant would have the necessary qualifications to work as an accountant; however, they’d also keep themselves abreast of the latest industry standards, rules, and regulations that govern the accounting industry. Some of the essential duties performed by an accountant include:
- Accurately calculating and submitting VAT returns with the relevant bodies for the company
- Preparing the annual accounts for reporting and complying with the relevant accounting standards
- Calculating corporation tax and self-assessment tax for individuals and filing it with the relevant authorities
- Accurately preparing management accounts
- Preparing company cash-flow statements and budgeting for the upcoming fiscal year
- Planning a company’s financial strategy
- Overseeing the bookkeeping process and assisting with payroll related matters
- Corresponding with the HMRC for any financial or tax-related issues
Tax Adviser in a Nutshell
A tax adviser is an expert who has significant experience and expertise in tax-related matters and has specialised in taxation. They keep up with the latest rules and regulations surrounding individual and business tax. They’re highly proficient individuals who have a knack for devising great strategies that help reduce tax bills.
You can pursue a career as a tax adviser by enrolling yourself with the Chartered Institute of Taxation for a qualification in tax. Most tax advisers go down this route to become qualified chartered tax advisers. If you’re looking for someone who can solely focus on your tax-related matters, then tax advisers are your go-to-people. They have a level of expertise in tax matters that will outweigh the experience provided by a traditional accountant.
Tax advisers can benefit individuals and organisations that have highly complex tax matters and are looking for professional and expert opinions on such issues. They have significant expertise to guide you in streamlining your tax operations.
Role of a Tax Adviser
Tax advisers have specialist expertise and knowledge in business, corporate, and individual taxation. They can assist you with inheritance tax planning and estate planning. Tax advisers also have extensive VAT knowledge, covering both domestic and international transactions. If you’re a self-employed individual or a company that operates in multiple countries and has a complicated tax structure, hiring a specialist tax adviser should be at the top of your to-do list.
The role of a tax adviser goes beyond simply providing advice. They can help businesses and high net-worth individuals develop robust and efficient strategies for tax matters and help them prepare their returns. Tax advisers also act as a representative for their respective companies in dealing with HMRC. Some other roles and duties of a tax adviser include:
- Dealing with complex VAT issues and helping companies understand the interpretation of the tax law
- Managing tax-related issues of overseas operations, international secondments, and related issues
- Helping in transfer pricing and cross-border transactions
- Helping in dealing with international tax refunds
- Dealing with withholding tax and credits
- Advising company owners and management in setting up tax structures
- Communication with tax authorities in different jurisdictions
- Dealing with complex cross-border tax matters and understanding overseas tax regulations
Hiring a Tax Adviser or an Accountant
So, let’s answer the big question: do you hire a tax adviser or an accountant? The answer depends on your existing business situation and the financial expertise you require.
As a budding start-up or a newly established company, it’s worth investing your resources in hiring an expert accountant who can deal with various issues. They’ll help you with almost all financial aspects of your company and can provide sufficient tax planning and compliance advice that helps you navigate the complexities. However, if you’re planning on starting a company that operates in a niche market or has a complicated tax structure, then bringing in a tax adviser can be more beneficial. Their in-depth knowledge and expertise regarding complicated tax issues can help streamline your operations and ensure tax compliance and cost-savings.
In most cases, businesses prefer to have both accountants and specialist tax advisers in their team to assist them in smoothly functioning their overall finance and tax functions. Hiring someone who has the required skillsets can benefit your business in more than one way. If you’re looking for a company that can provide you with taxation and accounting expertise, you can’t look past IBISS & Co. We have a team of specialist capital gain tax advisers and accountants in Walsall who can provide you with quality services.
Benefits of Hiring a Tax Adviser or Accountant
There is no substitute to experience that a tax adviser or a qualified accountant can bring to the table. Without a doubt, their expertise and experience can bring many benefits to your small business. You shouldn’t hesitate to invest in such a resource as you’d quickly realise the returns of such an investment.
A professional and experienced tax adviser can help lower your tax bill and minimise tax liabilities. If you’re an individual or own a company with a complicated tax structure, you need to bring in a tax adviser who can guide you to save money on taxes legally.
Preparing and filing taxes on your own and coordinating with HMRC can take up a lot of time. Even if you’re well-versed in accounting matters for your business, these tasks can be tedious. Hiring a tax adviser or accountant can save you a lot of time and let you concentrate on other important aspects of your business.
Perhaps the most significant benefit of hiring these individuals is that they bring unmatched professional expertise. As an individual or a business, you’ll need to deal with a host of tax matters, and dealing with them by yourself can be troublesome if you don’t have the necessary knowledge of handling such things. A professional tax adviser or accountant will help you with all aspects of your financial decisions to make informed decisions about your future.
An essential part of a tax adviser or an accountant’s job is to help you save money. Tax advisers will help you create strategies to cut down your tax bill. Accountants will deep dive into your financials and provide insight into where your business can cut down on unnecessary costs and help streamline your operations.
Another significant benefit of having such expertise on your team is that they’ll help you avoid mistakes that can be quite costly for your business. Individuals and businesses who end up filing their taxes themselves are prone to making mistakes. Filing taxes dealing with HMRC and other stakeholders is not as straightforward as it seems. Therefore, you need an expert by your side who can help you navigate the complex tax landscape. Instead of taking the risk of doing taxes yourself, it is worth getting professional services to avoid making any errors.
Tax advisers and accountants can help you stay organised. There are a million things you’d need to take care of within your business, and having the right help can make the whole process much smoother. These experts will communicate and advise you on your financial matters, help you understand complex tax and financial things beyond your scope, and ensure that your business is compliant with relevant rules and regulations.
You’ll have peace of mind knowing that your business is in safe hands. All your essential tax and financial matters will be handled by experts who’ll provide you with a safe, secure, and hassle-free experience.
Tax advisers and professional accountants can massively reduce your stress levels come tax time. You don’t have to worry about filing deadlines or missing a substantial deduction. Everything is taken care of by these professionals.
It’s essential to choose a tax adviser or an accountant wisely as they’re crucial to your business’s financial health and prosperity. Refrain from hiring inexperienced professionals, especially if you have a complicated tax or finance structure. As mentioned above, an experienced professional can help you in various financial areas of your business.
If you’re looking for quality accountants and the best personal tax advisors in the UK, you can’t look past IBISS & CO. We have some of the best chartered tax advisers & accountants in Walsall who’ll provide you with various expert tax and accounting services for your business. Our team of expert chartered accounts and business advisors in the UK has significant experience in dealing with complex tax and accounting matters.
Our unwavering commitment to provide quality services and inventive ways to legally reduce the amount of tax you pay has enabled us to become the go-to accounting and tax consultants in Walsall. If you own a rental property or have a complex business tax structure, we’re here to help. We can help you with landlord self-assessment tax return, inheritance tax planning, non-resident landlord self-assessment, and other issues. Contact us today for more information.