Dear Valued Clients:
PLEASE READ ALL OF THIS AS IT WILL PROVIDE GUIDANCE TOWARD CREATING MINIMAL HEALTH RISK AND MAXIMUM CONVENIENCE FOR YOU AND FOR US DURING THIS CHALLENGING TIME
We are writing to update you regarding our situation in relation to the current COVID-19 outbreak.As you know, this is a critical time of year for most of you and our team as we complete the 2019 personal income tax returns (and trust returns where applicable). Though we plan for and project personal income tax liabilities for many of you in advance and instalments for estimated taxes are remitted, there still remains a need for additional interaction between you and our team.
We are open for business and intend to provide you with as high quality and prompt service as you are accustomed to in spite of the unusual challenges we are collectively facing.
Our team members are currently all healthy and available to assist you. We are taking robust measures to maintain the highest standards of cleanliness within our entire physical plant along with individual hygienic and social distancing protocols to minimize the chances of any of us contracting the virus and/or passing same to each other or to you. We are monitoring reported changes to the situation and are implementing additional precautions as they are recommended by the health authorities. This does create additional stress and may from time to time lengthen our response time in certain situations. We will appreciate your patience and understanding in this regard.
General Communication and Information Exchange
Receipt of Client Records
Emails, texts, telephone, fax and other electronic media are expected to be responded to in our customary fashion. For those of you who usually send us data and information by way of electronic media this should not change at all and for those of you who do not we encourage you to do so.
To upload records to us securely please contact Caitlin Lee. You can also use your own encrypting software to deliver information to us.
Where personal tax packages, yearend or other project related information needs to be dropped off personally we will endeavor to minimize the duration of your time in our offices and limit the personal contact between you and our team members. In this regard we request that you call us when you are on your way up and interact efficiently with our front-end staff who are maintaining a strict hygienic regime. We will also ensure that your contact with metal door handles and desktops and other higher risk surfaces will be minimized.
Basically, it will entail a drop and dash. If you or we require email or telephone contact to follow up this will be encouraged and facilitated with minimum delay.
Transmission of Draft and Final Work Product
Many of you already review draft tax returns and financial statements which we send to you by way of encrypted electronic media followed by an email or telephone exchange to clarify any of your questions or concerns. We then arrange to send you final work product using the same media. For those of you who wish to have hard copies of work product we arrange for delivery or pick up through mutual discussion. This process should not change.
Personal income tax returns can usually be completed and approved without personal meetings though it is sometimes necessary to meet. For year ends and other more complex projects this is often unavoidable.Where personal meetings are required, we will ensure that the meeting venue will be regularly sanitized and the team members with whom you will meet are free of any contagion. As a general precaution, we will endeavor to complete as many of these meetings by phone as possible.
Depending on your business and personal circumstances you and/or your human resource team may experience temporary cash shortages. Governments are gearing up with various programs to assist individuals such as earlier and more liberal Employment Insurance access for those people who need to be temporarily away from work. Banks are lowering interest rates and will hopefully be willing to fast track temporary loans for businesses.Many other service providers are contemplating the loosening of deadlines for receipt of amounts owing.We will endeavor to stay abreast of all these resources and will be ready to assist you in accessing them.
We will welcome your feedback regarding all these topics. Let us know how we are doing and how we can improve.Most importantly DO NOT hesitate to contact us if you think we can be of any help to you.
Kindest regards and wishes,
Adam, Sandy, Doug and all of us in the Lee and Sharpe team