In today’s economy, you need a strong alliance

Kelly Ellison, owner of Alliance Accounting, discusses tax issues with Calera business owners. (Contributed/Mollie Brown)

Mistakes on your tax return can draw unwanted attention of the IRS and a possible audit. Hiring a CPA can reduce the risk of an audit, help you save on taxes and much more said Kelly Ellison, owner of Alliance Accounting.

Ellison, a certified public accountant, recently opened an office in Calera across from Victory GMC.  She has more than 17 years experience in tax and accounting and speaks at various events regarding tax issues. She is a CPA ambassador for the Alabama Society of Certified Public Accounts who raise awareness of services provided by CPAs.

“Do it yourself might be all right for home repairs, but it’s not a good idea for complicated tax matters,” Ellison said. “Using an experienced and knowledgeable tax professional will reduce the risk of mistakes on your return, which in turn reduces audit risk.

Ellison’s counsel is sound. I used a reputable website to file 2007 taxes and had to amend the return later because the program omitted several deductions.

According to Ellison, there are many benefits to using CPA services. A CPA is a personal financial planner, management consultant, tax planner, business consultant and more. By using a CPA, individuals and business owners receive definite tangible benefits such as savings in taxes, reduced operating costs, advice on retirement and college planning and even help with things such as marketing.

“A lot of people don’t realize a CPA is much more than a tax preparer,” Ellison said. “To become a CPA in Alabama, you must have five years of college and receive a degree with a concentration in tax/accounting classes and pass a rigorous four part exam that has less than a 50% pass rate. Once licensed, CPAs are governed by a strict code of professional ethics.”

Ellison especially enjoys tax planning for her clients. She recently helped a small business in our community with tax planning, saving it more than $7,000 in taxes. Another service Ellison offers is financial statement analysis. She compiles financial statements, compares the results with specific industry averages and offers practical, industry-specific advice on how to improve particular performance in sales, profitability and liquidity. In today’s economy, this gives businesses a competitive edge that will help them grow and reach financial goals.

Find out more about Ellison’s CPA services on her website, mystrongalliance.com or call 205-216-0543.

Mollie Brown can be reached at dmjhb1@bellsouth.net.