[J]ust because a person has the initials CPA after his/her name does not mean that he/she knows his/her arse from a hole in the ground when it comes to preparing 1040s.
That comes courtesy of the Wandering Tax Pro, Robert D. Flach. It got the attention of Joe Kristan, who came to the defense of CPAs everywhere but did admit that some CPAs have no business being near tax forms:
[Robert] then spends his next 10 paragraphs elaborating on our shortcomings. And that’s fine, to a point. Not all CPAs are qualified tax preparers. By the same token, not every lawyer is capable of defending you on a murder charge. But the guy you want by your side when the state wants to send you to the chair is definitely going to be a lawyer. And while not all CPAs should be your tax advisor, many of the best tax advisors are CPAs.
Case in point: many relatives and clueless friends of auditors still ask said auditors to prepare their tax returns. In most cases, a) this is a HUGE mistake and b) they don’t want to help you anyway.