Accounting and Assurance
Our auditing and assurance services are designed to deliver value beyond balancing books. We always ask ourselves – what else can we bring to this client or this assignment?
First, we identify your unique needs, then work with you to provide a tailored approach. In many cases, we’ll also bring our tax expertise or business advisory skills to the fore to provide a full-service solution.
Whether it’s a family-owned business looking for assistance with their accounting needs, or a company seeking an auditor, we have the understanding and expertise to handle the job.
Tax Planning and Compliance
At GCSE, we’re especially proud of our expertise in tax matters. From our partners and senior management to our front-line staff, we take care of your most pressing tax needs. We also produce a highly-acclaimed tax publication, In Touch with Tax.
Our tax expertise encompasses a wide range of services, including:
- Preparation of corporate, personal and trust tax returns
- All aspects of integrated corporate and personal tax planning, especially for the family owned enterprise, including estate planning for the owner/manager
- Planning for the structuring of transactions such as the purchase or sale of a business, and restructurings such as re-financing and creditor arrangements
- General tax compliance issues, including dealing and negotiating with the Canada Revenue Agency on behalf of clients
- Advising on international and public company transactions, including planning for inbound and outbound investments
- Dealing with all aspects of commodity taxes, especially the federal Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Harmonized Sales Tax (HST)
It goes without saying that personal tax is a major part of our practice, so we make sure to apply our hands-on approach to this delicate matter with the deftest of touches. We prepare the returns for virtually all of our corporate and business clients’ owners and family members, as well as many annual individual clients for whom we primarily provide return preparation and related functions.
Our personal tax practice includes returns for non-resident individuals with Canadian tax reporting requirements, and we also prepare U.S. returns for Canadians with U.S. tax filing requirements. This can include returns for an entire group or class of individuals of an organization. Since these matters call for thoroughness, we always pursue necessary follow ups with the Canada Revenue Agency, either on initial review or subsequent reassessment.
Accountants tend to be swamped in April, so generally people don’t contact them around that time. While our personal tax practice has been growing every year, almost exclusively thanks to word of mouth referrals, we can always handle more because of the efficient way we operate during this hectic season. Not only is it good business, but it helps keep stress levels down and office morale up.
As your trusted business advisor, your financial well-being is our priority. Because we understand what creates success for a business and what causes it to underperform, we offer all our clients business insights tailored to their specific needs.
This includes helping businesses expand through acquisition or internal growth, or perhaps divest themselves of an unprofitable division or product line. We also prepare financial forecasts and projections for a business plan, and prepare a valuation report for any one of several reasons. These could include the purchase or sale of a business or division, a litigation (perhaps family law) matter, a reorganization for income tax or business purposes or planning in the context of a family owned enterprise.
All that to say, we’re here to ensure your financial wellbeing.
In a commercial context, due diligence is the process of determining that information and representations are accurate prior to signing a contract.
At GCSE we have taken the “art” of due diligence to a new level. We do not simply check for numbers and documents, but strive to truly understand the core of every business. What makes it successful? What critical areas could adversely affect it? This in-depth and personalized approach is vital, especially when preparing or reviewing management prepared business forecasts.
Whether working with a financial institution, lawyer or principal investor or purchaser, we provide this service to the small and mid-market business sector, whether for a private owner managed business or for a public company.
To get a sense of our experience in this field, here’s a brief sample of some of the transactions we have been involved in:
- Two separate private placements in publicly traded food processing and distribution companies
- Outright purchase of the major machine shop and fabrication division of a large multinational corporation
- Equity and subordinated debt investment in beverage operation, followed-up with subsequent merger with a second beverage processor
- Equity and subordinated debt investment in companies in the following industries:
- Foundry operations
- Manufacturer and distributor of packaging and storage products
- Photo-finishing lab
- Glass and plastic recycling
GCSE’s strength in the real estate industry comes in large part from founding partner Robert Green, and his 40 years’ experience in accounting and real estate. This background, combined with our tax expertise, allows us to provide the right answers.
So whether an investor or owner/manager requires assistance in analysing an existing or prospective deal, or seeks advice in connection to purchasing or selling a property or project, rest assured we will work diligently to assist with these delicate matters.
We’re proud to act as personal accountants and advisors to a number of law firms, and count more than 300 lawyers as our clients. In this area of practice, we have demonstrable experience in:
- Developing and recommending appropriate information systems for a law practice
- Acting as an independent consultant to a firm and its partners in connection to partnership arrangements
- Advising on alternative structures, such as the use of management companies and partnerships, as well as the use of trust arrangements
- Dealing with the Law Society and other regulatory bodies on behalf of the firm and its members
- Assisting individual partners in minimizing their personal tax bite
We also have considerable experience in the use of professional corporations and related structures. Our familiarity with the legal profession, combined with our range of expertise, renders us well-equipped to serve as advisors and accountants to both individual lawyers and their firms.
Medical professionals, such as doctors and dentists, enjoy income splitting opportunities unique to their profession. We’re well-suited to help them manage these specific factors, as well as tackle the same business and investment challenges shared by our other clients.
With the changes that have expanded the tax benefits of incorporation for medical professionals, we’re poised to assist our medical professional clients in navigating the tax planning opportunities and ownership options available.
In addition, lower corporate tax rates will present an opportunity for doctors or dentists to accumulate more investment assets in a company. This makes our investment accounting and tax services all the more useful.
Investors and Wealth Management
Many of our clients have accumulated significant wealth (or aspire to do so).
To meet the growing demand from our clients for financial planning and investment management, we provide estate, wealth and preservation planning, which includes reorganizing the way assets are held.
While we don’t consider ourselves investment advisors, as we refrain from recommending specific publicly traded stocks, we’re well positioned to analyse, compare and provide our expertise on investments, most notably real estate. This includes the economic and tax consequences of any given investment opportunity.
When it comes to wealth management, our goal is to help our clients achieve success by providing professional, straightforward, and unbiased advice.
Not-for-Profits and Charities
Some may think not-for-profit organizations have less pressing needs for our services. However, they’re still the custodians of assets, whether received as donations, grants or some other form of fundraising, and are accountable to government authorities, donors and other stakeholders.
Since they have an obligation to maximize these assets in pursuit of the public good, our role is to provide credibility to an organization’s financial information through the audit process, as communicated in the auditors’ report.
Because of this, our not-for-profit clients can expect the same level of expertise and commitment to the financial health of their organization as we offer to our profit oriented clients.