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Bench FAQs for Tax Professionals

First time hearing about Bench and wondering how we can help you and your clients?

Here are the questions we hear the most from Tax Professionals:

1. Does Bench match the ending balances to prior year’s tax return?

A: Yes, we will collect the prior year’s tax return to make sure the ending balances match with what we have in Bench.

2. What happens if a client comes to Bench mid-year?

A: Bench will pick up the bookkeeping from the last completed month. We will collect a trial balance to make sure the ending/beginning balances match.

3. What happens if a client decides to leave Bench?

A: If a client leaves Bench they will still have access to their account. We will also provide them with a Financial Package and their historical data in Excel format.

4. Does Bench handle accrual bookkeeping?

A: We provide the majority of our clients with a modified form of cash basis bookkeeping. With this system, we record transactions as soon as the money has been deposited into the bank or charged to the bank/credit card.

However, we can and do provide some clients with accrual basis bookkeeping or adjustments. With this system, revenues and expenses are recorded when they’re earned, regardless of when the money is actually received or paid.

5. How can I integrate Bench financials to/from QBO/Xero?

A: Unfortunately there are currently no direct integrations available from/to QBO or Xero.

6. How can I provide a client’s tax return/AJEs?

A: You may simply upload them in the Documents section in the app. Or, email them to the client’s dedicated bookkeeper.

7. What is the YEF and how will I receive it?

A: The Year-End Financial package is a comprehensive package with an array of reports such as Income Statement, Balance Sheet, General Ledger and Trial Balance to help with the transition from bookkeeping to tax filing. You can find the YEF in Bench app in the Tax section. It will also be emailed to you directly when available for review.

8. How can I see year-to-year comparison?

A: You can download the Income Statement and the Balance Sheet directly from the Bench app. In app, click on “Reports” and select the date range you would like to review the financials.With the Excel export, you can compare year-to-year as well as month-to-month financials.

9. How does categorization work? How do you ensure the financials are accurate?

A: Our software is designed to recognize and categorize transactions by using artificial intelligence (AI). If our bookkeepers need to confirm a transaction, they’ll reach out to the client. Once the bookkeeping is complete for the month, tthe client’s books will go through an extensive review process by multiple members of the team to ensure consistency and accuracy.

10. Do you provide bank reconciliation documents?

A. We will not reconcile transactions unless they match the beginning/ending balance on bank statements. Although we do not have a bank rec report, we can provide bank statements alongside a General Ledger report.

11. How can I access the General Ledger report?

A: The General Ledger report will be available to the bookkeeper. You can request it at any point.

12. How can I communicate with my dedicated bookkeeper?

A: We have unlimited communication here at Bench. You can reach out to your bookkeeping team via app or email, and they will get back to you within less than a business day. You can also book a call at any time.

13. How long does it take Bench to complete monthly bookkeeping?

A: Once we receive all documents, we’ll complete the bookkeeping for the month within 15 business days. This gives us enough time to make any necessary adjustments before the end of the month.

14. How do you price your clients?

A: Our subscriptions are based on the business’s monthly expense volume.

15. Can Bench do historical bookkeeping?

A: Yes! We provide Catch Up bookkeeping services, no matter how far behind their books are.

16. Can I customize the chart of accounts?

A: Bench uses a standard chart of accounts that follow IRS standards.That being said, we can customize the chart of accounts depending on the needs of the clients.

17. Do you offer Invoicing (AR/AP), payroll?

A: We don’t offer any of those services, but we do partner with other companies (like Gusto and Freshbooks) that specialize in different areas of business admin.

18. How can I update the books?

A: You can provide us with adjusting journal entries at any time (via app or email). From there, our bookkeepers will update the books accordingly.

19. Where are the bookkeepers located? Do you outsource any work?

A: We do not outsource any of the work. All of our bookkeepers are full time employed with Bench and work in Vancouver, Canada.

20. What does the trial and onboarding process look like?

A: A member of our Bench team will reach out to your client to learn more about their business and bookkeeping needs. On this call, we’ll connect their accounts to Bench, and gather any extra documentation we need to complete your books.

Once we have everything set up, we’ll complete a month of your bookkeeping in 1-2 days. Our bookkeepers reconcile the accounts, categorize the transactions, and make necessary adjustments to the books. The end result is a set of accurate financial statements—an income statement and a balance sheet.

When the financial statements are complete, we review them with your clients on the phone. This call is an opportunity to ask any further questions about our service before making a financial commitment to Bench.

21. Does Bench handle 1099s?

A: When requested by our clients, we can track 1099 transactions and prepare a report at the year end to be used for filing.

22. How secure is Bench?

A: We protect your data with 256-bit SSL/TLS encryption. That’s the same level of encryption used by banks, so your account information in the Bench app is always protected. For more info, please visit: https://bench.co/security/

23. How does Bench collect documents?

A: There are several ways we can collect documents. We can collect through direct bank integrations within the Bench app for major financial institutions, third party logins for other services such as payroll, as well as manual document uploads in our software.

24. What training/certifications do your bookkeepers have?

A: All of our bookkeepers go through extensive training at Bench before they take on our clients’ financials. We also work in teams, so at any point in time, there will be individuals from different levels of seniority reviewing your clients’ books.

25. Do you provide W2s?

A: No Bench does not provide W2s.

26. Do you include unrecorded revenue/uncashed checks at the year end financials?

A: Since we are cash-basis, we will record transactions on the bank statements. If such transactions need to be recorded, you can simply provide us with adjusting journal entries and we can include these at the year end financials.

Got more questions about Bench and how we work with tax professionals? Feel free to book a call or contact us at accountants@bench.co.


This post is to be used for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, business, or tax advice. Each person should consult his or her own attorney, business advisor, or tax advisor with respect to matters referenced in this post. Bench assumes no liability for actions taken in reliance upon the information contained herein.

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