Tax Advisor Vs. Income Tax Preparer: What’s the Difference and Why Does it Matter?

With the start of this year’s income tax return season, I look forward to seeing familiar faces of clients we at Lodovico & Associates have served for years and years – along with new faces. What may be surprising is that we often see and communicate with our clients throughout the year, not just between January and April 15.

Why is that? At Lodovico & Associates we provide year-round, full service tax advisory services – from estate taxes to personalized tax strategies. We are tax advisors, not just tax preparers.

This time of year, you may be seeing national advertisements for tax preparation services and wonder what is a tax advisor vs. a tax preparer – and why does the difference matter? Here are some examples:

  • Expertise:A tax advisor has different qualifications and levels of expertise than an income tax preparer. Both are qualified to assist individuals with preparing and filing their income tax returns. However, tax advisors are qualified to provide more long-term, in-depth assistance to individuals and businesses.
  • Complexity:Because a tax advisor provides a deeper level of consultation, tax advisors are involved with more complex returns. We know the tax laws inside and out to help you navigate the law and use it to your benefit.
  • Tax strategies:A tax advisor not only prepares your tax returns, but also takes time to meet with you, review your personal tax situations and educates you on strategies to reduce your taxes now and in the future. At Lodovico & Associates, we are prepared to help you make decisions. From business tax strategies to estate tax planning to individual returns, our highly knowledgeable advisors are here to help you make choices that limit your tax implications. On the other hand, tax preparers provide short-term support – meaning, they only provide guidance on reducing your taxes or increasing your refund.
  • Efficiency:While tax preparers are typically quick to complete your returns, tax advisors are efficient. An advisor usually has a comprehensive view of your tax and income situation allowing for efficiency.
  • Communication:Generally, preparers are available from January through April, while advisors are go-to tax experts year-round. At Lodovico & Associates, we keep open communication with our clients and accommodate ongoing meetings, calls and emails throughout the year.

We look forward to serving as your trusted tax advisors this income tax season. To schedule an appointment, please call us at 412-271-1060.


By Tony Lodovico. Tony has been a partner of Lodovico & Associates, P.C. since 1990. Tony has over 30 years of professional accounting experience in both the private and public sectors of business. He also has over 15 years of experience in the evaluation of closely-held entities for such purposes as gift tax, estate tax, mergers and acquisitions and marital dissolution. He conducts numerous presentations and seminars on tax planning, entity formation, business valuation, cost segregation and estate tax services.


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