This Independent Contractor Agreement is made effective as of signed date below (“Date”) by Tax preparer (“Preparer”) and Tax Preparation Company (“Company”) In this Agreement, the party who is contracting to receive the services shall be referred to as “Company,” and the party providing the services shall be referred to as “Preparer.”
1. DESCRIPTION OF SERVICES. Beginning on date signed, Preparer will provide the following services (collectively, the “Services”): tax preparation services; client file management and document retention.
2. REMUNERATION FOR SERVICES. Preparer is entitled to receive a portion of fees collected from clients for Services rendered per the option indicated below. Preparer is required to issue an invoice to Company for Services provided to his/her clients. Preparer will be paid from fees collected and will not be paid in instances where no fees are collected from clients. Where a client’s fee will be taken from that client’s refund, Preparer will not be paid until such time as that refund is issued. Preparer is provided with a fee schedule and will be paid out 30% commission for each completed preparation.
3. TERM/TERMINATION. NxtLevl Professional Services, LLC is an at will employer. This means that both the Preparer and the Company reserve the right to terminate the contract relationship at anytime for any reason without notice.
4. RELATIONSHIP OF PARTIES. It is understood by the parties that Preparer is an independent contractor with respect to Company, and not an employee of Company. As such, Company will not provide fringe benefits, including health insurance benefits, paid vacation leave, or any other employee benefit, for the benefit of Preparer.
5. PTIN. Preparer is required to obtain and maintain a Preparer’s Tax Identification Number (PTIN) in accordance with the IRS’ rules and regulations in place during the period covered by this agreement. Preparer will not be allowed to prepare a return as a contractor for Company without a registered PTIN number. This agreement becomes null and void if Preparer fails to obtain or, for any reason ceases to have a valid PTIN.
6. CODE OF CONDUCT. Preparer is required to govern himself/herself in accordance with all relevant state and federal laws in particular those laws that address tax return preparation. Additionally, Preparer is required to comply with any and all relevant administrative rules and regulations, particularly IRS Circular 230. Any willful or malicious activity conducted by Preparer regarding the falsifying of documents or information in a tax return will be transferred to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and any other appropriate authorities. Additionally, by executing this agreement, Preparer acknowledges that he/she is aware of the due diligence requirements and penalties imposed by the IRS with respect to the preparation of returns containing refundable credits (the earned income tax credit, the child tax credit, and the education expense credit). Preparer additionally agrees to prepare returns that follow these IRS due diligence requirements and that failure to do so represents a breach of this agreement.
7. LIABILITY. Preparer is liable for following all applicable rules and regulations in the state in which they operate, and the IRS for all Services rendered under this agreement. By executing this agreement, Preparer agrees to correct any errors or omissions whether intentional or inadvertent without compensation from Company. Preparer agrees that any liability associated with the provision of Services under this agreement will be that of Preparer and not Company.
8. BACKGROUND CHECKS AND FINGERPRINTING. Company and its licensor reserve the right to conduct a progressive background check on Preparer. The background check may include but is not limited to, credit history, criminal history, and previous business history. Preparer is required to submit a fingerprint card, to be taken by a Company certified representative. If a certified representative is not available, Preparer must obtain a fingerprint card from their local police department.
9. WORK PRODUCT OWNERSHIP. Any copyrightable works, ideas, discoveries, inventions, patents, products, or other information (collectively, the “Work Product”) developed in whole or in part by Preparer in connection with the Services shall be the exclusive property of NxtLevl Professional Services, LLC in accordance with NxtLevl Professional Services, LLC licensing agreement with Company. Upon request, Preparer shall sign all documents necessary to confirm or perfect the exclusive ownership of the Work Product by NxtLevl Professional Services, LLC.
10. CLIENTS. Preparer is responsible for generating their own leads and clients for return preparation. Any clients obtained by Preparer are the property of Preparer.
11. OWNERSHIP OF SOCIAL MEDIA CONTACTS. Any social media contacts, including “followers” or “friends,” that are acquired through accounts (including, but not limited to email addresses, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or other social media networks) used or created on behalf of Company are the property of Preparer.
12. TRAINING. Preparer is required to complete all training necessary to qualify for and maintain their paid preparer status with the IRS. Company may facilitate such training, but any such training is the IRS’ training program that the IRS requires paid preparers to complete. A training assessment will be issued at the completion of the training. Preparer is required to score 70% or better on examinations conducted with respect to any training in ordered to qualify to contract with Company.
13. CONTINUING EDUCATION. Preparer is responsible for completing any and all continuing education required to maintain their PTIN as mandated by the IRS.
14. EFIN NUMBER. Preparer may utilize their own EFIN number. In the event that Preparer doesn’t have his/her own EFIN number, he/she may utilize Company’s EFIN number for the purpose of electronically filing tax returns prepared by Preparer.
15. CONFIDENTIALITY. Preparer will not at any time or in any manner, either directly or indirectly, divulge, disclose, or communicate any information that is the property of Company or Umbrella to any third party whether or not such conveyance personally benefits Preparer. Preparer also will not at any time or in any manner, either directly or indirectly, divulge, disclose, or communicate any information that is the property of any client of Company or Umbrella. Preparer will protect all such information and treat it as strictly confidential. This provision shall continue to be effective after the termination of this Agreement. Upon termination of this Agreement, Preparer will return to Company all records, notes, documentation, and other items that were used, created, or controlled by Preparer during the term of this Agreement with respect to any Services provided that are required for Company to comply with any due diligence requirements imposed by the IRS.
16. FILE AND RECORD MAINTENANCE. Company will maintain all client return files in accordance with rules and regulations set forth by the IRS. Preparer may access their clients’ files as needed to respond to requests from the client or the IRS. Preparer may maintain copies of their own records at a location of their choosing, but Preparer accepts all liability for any disclosures of client information that occur because of these files they choose to maintain. This clause does not require Company to create the files. The creation of the files is the sole responsibility of Preparer. Preparer acknowledges that he/she is aware of the various recordkeeping and due diligence requirements associated with each return that is prepared. Preparer also acknowledges that they will follow all IRS rules with respect to file and recordkeeping.
17. OFFICE AND EQUIPMENT USE. Company will not provide an office environment and/ or computer for Preparer to prepare returns for his/her clients. Preparer is required to utilize any of his/her own equipment or resources to assist in the preparation of returns for his/her clients if none of this utilization violates any existing licenses, covenants, etc. of Company or NxtLevl Professional Services, LLC. Preparer is free to set his/her own hours and number of hours worked and is free to work from home.
18. BUSINESS EXPENSES. Any expenses associated with Preparer’s provision of Services are his/her own and will not be reimbursed by Company. This includes, but is not limited to automobile expenses associated with providing Services for clients; any office supplies used by Preparer; costs associated with Preparer’s retaining employees, agents, or designees; etc.
19. INDEMNIFICATION. Preparer agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Company from all claims, losses, expenses, fees including attorney fees, costs, and judgments that may be asserted against Company that result from the acts
or omissions of Preparer, Preparer’s employees, agents, or designees, if any.
20. ENTIRE AGREEMENT. This agreement contains the entire agreement of the parties, and there are no other promises or conditions in any other agreement, whether oral or written, that usurp the provisions contained herein.
21. SEVERABILITY. If any provision of this agreement shall be held to be invalid or unenforceable for any reason, the remaining provisions shall continue to be valid and enforceable. If a court finds that any provision of this agreement is invalid or unenforceable, but that by limiting such provision it would become valid and enforceable, then such provision shall be deemed to be written, construed, and enforced as so limited.
22. APPLICABLE LAW. This Agreement shall be governed by the laws of the State of North Carolina.