Accountants vs. Certified Public Accountants

Accountants vs. Certified Public Accountants

Are you considering hiring someone to help with your finance and tax needs in California? You know you need an accountant, but what’s the difference between a regular accountant and a Sacramento certified public accountant? While accountants and CPA’s do much the same work, a CPA is better able to help you with your individual finance needs.

General accountants are often employed by individual companies and work solely with that business’ financial reports and records, and they usually file their taxes. They can work for large, international companies and small family owned businesses, but in either case, they are significant figures in their companies. In smaller businesses, they may be responsible for tracking payroll, sales, accounts payable, accounts receivable, and investments. No matter what size of company they work for, accountants keep all up-to-date financial records in a ledger, which is available for review by managers and owners of the company. Accountants usually have a college degree in finance and accounting, and they usually have passed local certification standards.

A Sacramento certified public accountant, on the other hand, has passed a barrage of tests and certification measures from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. These tests give them the license to perform tasks that general accountants are legally not permitted to do. In addition, a Sacramento certified public accountant must take 120 hours of further classes and training every three years. This ensures that he is aware of changes in the field, and that clients are getting the best in experience and expertise. Much of the work of CPA’s involves helping individuals and corporations file taxes and working as financial consultants. While general accountants also do this kind of work, they generally work for a single company. A Sacramento certified public accountant works more on what you might think of as a freelance basis and is allowed to do other tasks such as working with trusts and estates, partnerships, and S-corporations.

Certified public accountants are also legally allowed to audit businesses and individuals. This, in part, is why the FBI generally hires only CPA’s and attorneys. CPA’s are also more likely to find jobs with federal or state governments than general accountants. And while companies hire many accountants, only a certified public accountant is likely to be appointed Chief Financial Officer or Chief Executive Officer for a company.

Whether you are an individual looking for help in filing taxes, estate planning, or financial analysis or you are a California business owner who needs help with taxes or mergers and acquisitions, a Sacramento certified public accountant is your best bet to get the highest quality of service. For experience, knowledge, and expertise talk to a Sacramento CPA to ensure your financial health.

Looking for certified public accountant firm specializing in bookkeeping, tax services, and accounting for individuals and corporations in Sacramento, contact Shari L Cantor, CPA online.

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