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Prepare to Meet With a CPA

There are important questions to ask when going into your introductory meeting with a CPA. Below are some examples -- whether you’re looking for individual tax or small-business advisory services -- to help you find a CPA that’s the right fit for your needs.

  • How long has your firm been in business?
  • Do you maintain an active CPA certificate?
    You can also refer to the Minnesota Board of Accountancy website for a directory of CPAs with an active certificate.
  • Do you have a firm permit to practice public accounting?
    A firm that implies that it's a CPA firm must have a firm permit. You can also verify a firm has a permit on the Minnesota Board of Accountancy website.
  • Do you prefer conducting client meetings in person, virtually or a combination of the two?
  • What education have you recently completed in your area of expertise?
  • Are you a member of a professional organization, such as the Minnesota Society of CPAs and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants?
  • What other certifications are held by CPAs and staff accountants in your office?
  • Can I contact any of your current clients for a referral?

Questions for small-business owners

In addition to the questions above, small-business owners will benefit from asking the following questions in their introductory meeting.

  • What is your expertise and industry knowledge of my business?
  • What percentage of your practice comes from other clients with a similar business as mine?
  • What is your hourly rate and what charges can I expect if I have questions throughout the year?
  • What computer programs do you prefer your clients use for record-keeping?
  • When was your last peer review, and would you be willing to show me the report?