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#1991118 - 01/26/15 09:07 PM Tax preparing
Marnie Offline
Gold Star
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 437
Nevada
If an employee has learned to do taxes on his own, can that employee prepare taxes at no charge for low-to-mod income on behalf of the bank during bank hours to count for CRA service hours credit? I'm confused whether this qualifies for a couple of reasons: not really offering banking/financial expertise, plus the fact the bank says it does not offer tax advice, even disclaiming this in some marketing material that customers should consult their tax advisors. Yet, here we are providing tax advice and doing taxes as a rep for the bank to count it for CRA credit?

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CRA
#1991204 - 01/26/15 11:11 PM Re: Tax preparing Marnie
Pale Rider Offline
10K Club
Pale Rider
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 34,318
under the Lone Star
No question the prep of LMI tax returns at a sanctioned VITA site is a CD service by a bank employee representing the bank. Those volunteers have been trained by the IRS and qualified to prepare returns, again, at an approved VITA site.

I believe your concerns are important. Your bank, preparing tax returns, on its property. I am not at all comfortable with that.

But others may do this and get credit. Let's see what the gurus say.
_________________________
Societies that do not find work in and of itself "pleasing to God and requisite to Man," tend to be highly corrupt.


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#1991365 - 01/27/15 05:19 PM Re: Tax preparing Pale Rider
Marnie Offline
Gold Star
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 437
Nevada
No, the employee is not doing tax prep on site, but at a LMI school that has set up a room for doing so.

I wasn't sure tax preparation would be counted as a financial service provided because this does not fall under what the bank offers and was concerned about doing so when we tell customers we do not provide tax advice.

I can see the bank sponsoring the funds/donations to provide tax prep services for LMI, and have that count for CRA, but to have an employee actually do taxes just didn't seem to fall under that, anymore than an employee advising LMI individuals about any other topic. But you are saying it does. Thanks for your input.

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#1991371 - 01/27/15 05:37 PM Re: Tax preparing Marnie
CompliantOkie Offline
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CompliantOkie
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 420
OOOOOOklahoma
I'm with Pale. I think VITA is a great way to get CD service consideration. I would be very concerned if an employee just decided to do these tax returns as a "lone wolf." The umbrella of VITA ensures that the preparers are well-trained and qualified to complete tax documents and gives the population a feeling of trust.

If I were you, I would look for a VITA site near you and suggest the employee volunteer there. Here's the IRS link to locate the nearest VITA site.
VITA Site Locator

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#1991373 - 01/27/15 05:38 PM Re: Tax preparing Marnie
Care4RCommunity Offline
Member
Care4RCommunity
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 98
NJ
I would say that tax preparation is certainly using your financial expertise, and doing so for low-mod individuals meets 2/3 of the definition for a qualified CD service. The last third of the definition, officially representing the bank, applies here, but would make me nervous.

I might be too cautious, but could there be other compliance implications? (Encouraging small IRA's to save on taxes could be providing tax advice. Could UDAAP find it's way into this?)

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#1991376 - 01/27/15 05:39 PM Re: Tax preparing Care4RCommunity
Marnie Offline
Gold Star
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 437
Nevada
Thanks All!

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