3 Ways You Can Detect if You Have a Bad Accountant

Many options are available when looking for an accountant, but not all accountants are competent. Not recognising the warning signs of a bad accountant can cause wasted funds and other issues for you and your staff. However, even if an accountant is not up to the job but seems determined to be better, they can do so by taking CPD courses for accountants.

Such professional accreditation can affect the professional trajectory of accountants and will help accounting firms hire the best person for the job. However, without having professional accounting qualifications, an accountant can easily be poor at their job.

With that in consideration, here are 3 ways you can detect if you have a bad accountant. 

Unprofessional Behaviour

Businesses, as well as accountants, should conduct themselves professionally. It should also raise a red flag if yours divulges information about other clients or disparages competing accounting firms. 

Unprofessional Behaviour

All small firms should strive to use their lawful tax allowances. However, some accountants provide strategies for avoiding taxes by using offshore businesses or trusts. Beware if your accountant suggests options or strategies that seem too good to be true.

Even if it could seem to be to your best advantage, an accountant shouldn’t support unethical behaviour because there’s a good possibility that you’ll regret it later. Instead, follow your instincts and the above suggestions regarding what to watch out for. Always remember that your accountant is there to assist you and your business.

Makes Big Promises and Claims

Lower fees, improved tax savings, and better customer service – you’re guaranteed to listen to at least one of these or something similar when interviewing candidates for your company’s accountant position.

Any excellent accountant can justify why they are the ideal candidate for the position, but you should be sceptical of overblown claims or promises. For example, you wouldn’t believe a doctor who gave you a prescription without seeing or checking you out, and the same goes for an accountant who claims without looking at your financial records.

A competent accountant will help you reduce your taxes legally, which is better for your company over the long run.

They are Reactive, Instead of Proactive

Good accountants make excellent consultants and advisors. They are not hesitant to assist their clients with problems outside of taxation, being helpful with topics including insurance, corporate management, and even personal financial planning.

There’s not a single business owner who would not adore having a smart financial professional on their team making proactive recommendations.

Clients should be free to discuss their queries, suggestions, and worries with their accountants. However, most clients hardly possess the financial expertise, background, or education their accountant has. As a result, there may be information that the clients don’t know.

Therefore, an accountant should occasionally start conversations with customers about potential opportunities or problematic situations that might affect them. It shouldn’t always be the client’s responsibility.


These are just some signs that your accountant is probably not the best choice. Unfortunately, if any of these warning signals apply to you, there’s a good possibility that your current relationship is causing you some underlying anxiety.

Effective accounting is not a luxury, but an absolute need for a small firm and a large business. Therefore, never settle for anything less than what you need. You are paying for it, after all.

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