VITA Useful Links
(At least for the Fort Collins, Colorado tax preparation region.)
SilGro home page for Alan Silverstein and Cathie
Last update: February 10, 2017
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Quick Reference (while completing a tax return)
Colorado tax returns:
You might already have on paper:
-- northern Colorado VITA information
-- big (3.8 Mb) PDF of 2-page printed flyer including sites and dates
- Control-select to open a link in a new tab (in most browsers).
- Alt-tab to switch windows (such as between browsers).
- Control-tab to switch tabs within a browser.
- Control-R to refresh a webpage within a browser.
- Control-C to copy highlighted text (but if it fails in TWO,
right-click instead and say "Copy").
- Control-V to paste text, useful say on Form 8962
when copying numbers, or adding lots of similar W2-G's.
- TaxWise: Control-0 (zero) to resize, really to fix a botched screen.
- TaxWise: Control-space to toggle field red/black (f3 doesn't always work).
- TaxWise: Control-D shorthand to run diagnostics.
- TaxWise: f9 shorthand to pop links for one field.
Short list for start of new season:
- Put the client at ease:
- Help settle in and understand the process including quality review:
You'll take everything home with you except this top sheet with
just your name on it.
- Emphasize they are responsible for their own return:
My goal is to create for you a tax return that you are
comfortable signing, since you're ultimately responsible for it.
It's between you and the IRS. I know that if you really enjoyed
this you'd be at home doing it yourself, so I don't expect you to
understand every line. But I want to answer your questions well
enough so you're comfortable signing the return when we're done.
I'll review it with you, and so will the quality review
- Review documents:
- Ensure photo IDs and SS cards or equivalent. Hold at least driver
licenses for data entry.
- Do they have last year's return with them? Available online?
- If a past client, probe for what has changed since last year.
(Such as income, deductions, moves, dependents, vehicle purchases
- Review all paperwork, ask questions, organize, mark up, look for
missing or confusing situations. If there's one W-2 or 1099-R,
etc, are there more of the same type that are missing? All income
- Verify correct info on on every document: Tax year, SSN, name,
address; ITIN can be a warning signal. Look for missing or
"unsure" information, or out-of-scope.
- Validate full-time students and disabled taxpayers, see
- Especially watch for self-employed or cash compensation clients.
- Create tax return in TaxWise Online.
- Run diagnostics, resolve anomalies, prepare efile:
- Can use control-D any time to look for errors, warnings, and
- Show at least "Return Summary" to the client.