A non-client business owner stopped in today for forms. I sent him to the local IRS office.
He was surprised we don't carry forms. Well, we don't; haven't for years. Everything we file is on the computer and filed electronically.
Regular clients allow me to plug the data into my computer and print clean copy. I don't have time to waste printing forms for non-clients.
Do not consider me rude. Time is money and I get about 200 requests per year. The IRS will provide forms online or at a local office for free. The government has the resources to hand out free forms, I don't.
The businessman went on to inform me he is currently working through an audit on his own and the IRS just opened several more years of returns. I told him he really needs a tax pro. He thought differently. I was a nice guy, however. As he explained the audit, I told him he will need to file an appeal to get the assessed tax reduced.
He smiled. I know he has no clue on how to file an appeal. The IRS will help reduce the tax burden for the rest of us on his dime. Too bad. He seemed like a nice guy. The IRS is taking him for a ride. I forgot to ask which auditor he has. I have a pretty good idea, anyway. Twenty-six years on the job and I have a pretty good feel for the way each auditor works.
The moral of the story: Spending a few bucks with your friendly accountant can save serious coin with the IRS. Oh, and you can order free forms from the IRS here, employers here, and state forms here.