To Whom It May Going Concern: My CPA Is Locked Up and They Won’t Let Her Out

This is the latest, if much overdue, edition of our infrequent feature, To Whom It May Going Concern. Here we share some of the more, shall we say, interesting messages that come across the wire. If you get the urge to tell us what you think about this here website, have a stupid tip, or just want to rant, email tips@goingconcern.com with "To Whom It May Going Concern" in the subject line, @ us on Twitter or just yell really loud and maybe we'll hear you. Just a reminder that all messages are considered on the record unless specified otherwise.

In a matter of weeks, or maybe even days, farewell emails of all varities will start pouring into our inboxes. More recently, however, we've seen mostly tips that include the puzzling, the mundane, the worrisome and the unoriginal.  Let's get right to it.

When you're in trouble with the IRS and can't figure out why, the worst thing you want to discover is that your CPA is probably in jail. That's exactly what happened to this gent, which is why he asked us for help:

Hello Adrienne,

I stumbled over an article on your website (https://goingconcern.com/post/california-board-accountancy-moves-stop-incarcerated-cpa-providing-exceptional-client-service) while searching for my former CPA. This is how I realized that she is (or was) incarcerated. This might be the reason why I can’t get any contact to her.
 
Now I do have a question and would appreciate a tip or advise. 
 
The thing is, that my CPA, Mrs Meyer, failed to eFile the 2012 tax report for me. She sent me the client copy and I payed all my taxes. Just the paperwork never arrived at the IRS. Now they are charging me a patently of 2.500USD. Due to the delay.  
Since I can’t get any contact to my former CPA I can’t prove that it was ever sent to the IRS. 
Do you have any experience in such cases? Is it possible to make a deal with the IRS? Should I get a lawyer or could a (new) CPA help me here?
 
I’ll try to talk to the IRS again today and see what they will say.
 
Since I am a newer resident and not familiar with many procedures in the US, any feedback is very much appreciated.
Thankfully, "My CPA is in jail" isn't a subject line we see often. In this case, it's best to defer to the IRS and the advice of a licensed professional who won't be appearing on an episode of Lockup any time soon. Another CPA may be able to give you some advice here, or at a minimum help you make sure this doesn't happen in the future.
 
Next up, we have this one for the bros. It has absolutely nothing to do with the content of this website except for the fact that we have a lot of bros around here, I suppose.
Not really sure what you will do with this but…too good not to share.
 

Some of you may recall a small, insignificant event that occurred last week and no, we aren't talking about #TheDress. Even though Leonard Nimoy was 83 and a long-time sufferer of COPD, his death came as a shock to everyone with access to a social media account. Apparently, that grief spilled over into our tip box and may have caused several hours to go unbilled:

Leonard Nimoy dying is a big story in accounting firms today, at my firm there was an eruption when news broke! I'd be interested in hearing what the buzz was at other firms…
It's unfortunate BoMo did not release a statement on the matter.
 
Moving on, here we have an unsubstantiated rumor with zero evidence to back it up. This happens a lot in our tip box:
I am hearing that Grant Thornton and Blum Shapiro in New England are going to merge  – any truth to this rumor ?
Then, we got this gem. Protip: telling us you're too lazy to do something is a guaranteed way to get us not to do it for you. Ripping off Shawshank Redemption only makes it worse. But lookie here, we're posting it anyway (you're welcome):
{GC:  Too tired/lazy/frazzled to find how to post on Open Items.  Can you? Feel free to make up headline, or borrow from last line.  Editing is fine too.  Kthxbye.}
 
[Setting:  Annual review/comp increase discussion]
 
Partner: Do you feel happy with the past year, and that you’ve made the right career move by becoming a CPA?
 
Disgruntled senior:  Right career move?  Well, now, let me see. You know, I don't have any idea what that means.
 
Partner: Well, it means that you're a CPA – a trusted advisor, and if you stay until you’re at least a manager, your lifetime compensation will be significant.
 
Disgruntled senior:  I’ve heard all of this before.  In the meantime, I’m working 90-hour weeks and living with my parents.
 
Partner:  Just keep at it, and you won’t regret staying in public accounting.
 
Disgruntled senior:  Regret?  There's not a day goes by that I don't feel regret.  Not because my hourly pay based on hours worked is barely minimum wage, or because you talk about work-life balance but have no intention of letting me leave at a reasonable time.  I regret becoming an accountant, becoming a CPA. I look back on the way I was, in college: a young, stupid kid who majored in accounting.  I want to talk to him.  I want to try to talk some sense to him, tell him the way things are, to choose another career.  One where you can leave at 5:00 without guilt.  But I can't.  That kid's long gone and this doughy shell of a person is all that's left.  I gotta live with that. Trusted advisor?  It's just a bullshit phrase.  So go ahead and give me my insulting comp increase amount, and stop wasting my time.  Because to tell you the truth, I gotta take a shit.
It's too bad this person couldn't be bothered to post that in Open Items, it may have done well.
 
That's pretty much all we've got for this edition of To Whom It May Going Concern. Keep those tips coming and we'll keep bundling the rejects together.

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