Switching Accountants: How To Make The Process Easier

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August 09, 2017

As a contractor or freelancer, you’ll spend a lot of time building relationships. From communicating with current clients to meeting new prospects, things like shaking hands, phone calls, and email exchanges are all part and parcel of the self-employed lifestyle.

But out of all the people you interact with, there’s no relationship more important than the one between you and your accountant. If you’re not on the same page as your financially-savvy friend, or you aren’t a good fit for one another, issues later down the line are inevitable. And sometimes, these complications can prick up the ears of the taxman.

Switching accountants is a lot like going to the dentist: never enjoyable, but ultimately necessary if something isn’t right. Here are a few tips to make the process a little less painful.

Get the timing right

There’s no perfect time to break off a relationship with your accountant, especially if you’ve known one another for years. However, you can perform invaluable damage limitation by choosing your moment carefully.

After the end of the financial year, for example, is often a good time to inform your accountant that their services will no longer be required. It’s beneficial for both parties if you cut the tie during a quieter period – where no business is being conducted and neither owes the other any money. After all, the last thing you want is financial disputes.

Don’t leave anything behind

Be sure to obtain the most recent copies of accounts, returns, expenses, and Companies House codes from your accountant before you bid them farewell forever. They have no obligation to keep hold of this information and can get into trouble for doing so, so don’t be afraid to urge them to send your data promptly.

Written proof of the separation may also be required, so be sure to confirm your departure via email as well as in person/on the phone. Cover your tracks and don’t leave anything behind.

Decide who you’re going to before you leave

No matter how bad things have gotten with your accountant, it’s crucial to find a new company to handle your finances before you take the leap. Otherwise, you risk hopping out of the frying pan and into the fire.

With a new accountant by your side, the process of moving is considerably easier. They will do most of the work that’s required and can answer any questions you have about the changeover to assuage all your concerns. For the switch to go smoothly, you’ll need to get a fresh financial face on board before you jump ship.

If you’re not feeling one hundred per cent comfortable with your current accountant, consider making the switch to Bright Ideas. Moving to us can be done in two simple steps: all you need to do is inform your current accountant that you’re changing things around and we’ll handle the rest. Get in touch with our team on 0161 451 3924 or send an email to info@biaccountancy.com for more information.

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