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What to do if you suspect your accountant of malpractice

As a small business owner, you hired your accountant to take the burden of tax preparation, budgeting and financial planning off of you and your partners. For many, the financial investment in a certified public accountant is worth it in the time and energy saved.

But a mistake by your accountant that costs your business significant money can make you question the relationship. You may even wonder if your accountant was acting negligently. What should you do to protect yourself and your company?

5 steps for dealing with an accountant’s mistake

Here are five steps to take after finding out that your accountant made a costly error.

  • Talk to them. Your accountant might have a reasonable explanation for why something is not what you expected. But if they won’t get back to you or seem evasive about the matter, it could be a red flag.
  • Make sure you shared everything. It’s possible that this error is the result of the accountant not having all the information they needed.
  • Have them fix the mistake. Some accounting errors can be fixed fairly easily, such as by filing an amended tax return.
  • Get a second opinion. If your accountant cannot fix the error quickly or explain what happened to your satisfaction, consider hiring another accountant to review your company’s financial records.
  • Talk to a lawyer. If nothing else works, you might need to file an accounting malpractice lawsuit. An attorney who knows the law surrounding Maryland accountants’ fiduciary duty to their clients can investigate your case and help you determine how to proceed.

You can get your accounting problems taken care of. It’s a matter of finding the best strategy for the situation.