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Privacy Policy

Privacy Statement

Effective date:  January 1, 2021

Introduction

Michael Russ, CPA, Inc. (“MWRCPAI” or “we”, “us”) is a local (San Diego County, California) professional services firm which provides tax preparation services to individuals and private businesses (the “Services”) residing in the United States of America.  Your privacy and the security of your personal information are important to us.  This Privacy Statement outlines our general policy and practices for protecting personal information that we collect through our web site at www.mrusscpa.com (the “Site”) and in connection with provision of the Services.  This Privacy Statement explains the types of information we gather through our Site and in connection with our Services, how we use that information, and the choices individuals, and individuals representing private businesses, may exercise regarding our use of, and their ability to correct, that information.  The following facts about this Site are included below: This site does NOT use any of the following cookie types: Personalization, Analytics, Performance (other than for IT security), Survey, Social, and/or Marketing.  This site does NOT use beacons.” By submitting personal information to us, you are consenting to use of your personal information (including any disclosures, processing, and transfers of your information to third party processors within the USA by MWRCPAI) in accordance with this Privacy Statement.  Any consent you provide is entirely voluntary. If you do not accept this Privacy Statement, then you should not submit any personal information to MWRCPAI  through this Site or in connection with any Services.

Notice, Choice, and Use

In order to use any page on this Site, other than the Client Log-In (“Client Portal”) page, you do NOT need to send us any personal information.  You may voluntarily provide us directly with personal information, such as your name and contact information, as well as other information in connection with Services you might engage us to perform for you.  In order to use the Client Portal on this Site, you do need to already be a client of ours and to have communicated to us your intention to send us information via this secure Client Portal.  If you have done that, then we would have already sent you, or will send you, instructions on how to securely access and use the Client Portal.  This Client Portal is provided by our service providers*  who are USA-based divisions of a major North American corporation publicly traded on the NYSE and subject to US PCAOB audit rules and holding SOC2 reports with no exceptions for the services they provide us.

This Site does have a favion, as, in 2021, do most national and regional accounting firms and investment firms, and as do the IRS, the CDTFA, and data.ftb.ca.gov. 

This Site does NOT use beacons, does NOT use cookies for marketing, and does NOT use cookies for personalizationThe MWRCPAI Site does NOT use Google Analytics, and does NOT report any such analytics from some other service to MWRCPAI.  We do NOT use customer relationship management tools. 

Our legal basis for processing any personal information provided to us is either that:  (a) you have expressly consented to the practices described in this Privacy Statement by voluntarily providing your personal information to MWRCPAI;  (b) such processing is necessary for the performance of Services you have asked MWRCPAI to perform for you;  (c) to meet legal, regulatory or professional standards obligations;  or (d) to perform activities in furtherance of our lawful and legitimate interests. 

We retain personal information for only so long as necessary for the intended purpose for which it was collected, unless a longer retention period is required or permitted by law or our document retention policies based on IRS requirements, professional standards, and best practices. 

Site Logging and IP Addresses

As is the case with many commercial Web sites, the MWRCPAI Site might automatically log certain information about visitor access to a Site, which may include a visitor’s internet protocol address, browser type, language, internet service provider, and/or date and time stamps.  Any such information, if logged, would only be used for IT security and systems diagnostic purposes by our service providers*. 

Cookies

The use of “cookies” is common practice for most Web/web sites; however, most web browsers include settings that allow users to decline cookies.  For example, in Firefox a user can go to the top right corner and click on the far upper right corner where 3 horizontal lines exist [“Open menu”], scroll down and click on “Options”, click on “Privacy & Security”, and modify a variety of settings and still have excellent functionality on the web.  These settings include blocking cookies and/or erasing cookies on close of the browser.  Even if you do not modify settings, browsers allow you to delete cookies from your system if you choose to do so. 

Further information about managing cookies can be found in your browser’s help file. 

We do NOT use any of the following cookie types: Personalization, Analytics, Performance (other than for IT security), Survey, Social, Marketing. And we do NOT use other third party tools or widgets. 

We do NOT use web beacons nor any active forms with autofill.  The only form on the Site is the on the secure Client Portal page for client sign-in and is provided by our service provider*.  We do NOT use other third party tools and/or widgets. 

Please note that the secure Client Login page (Client Portal) functions according to the security protocols of our providers*.

Disclosures and Transfers

MWRCPAI will not disclose an individual’s personal information to third parties, except as set forth in this Privacy Statement, when we have permission to make the disclosure, or as necessary to fulfill the purpose for which the information was submitted.  We also may use of or disclose personal information as we believe to be necessary or appropriate:  (a) under applicable law [including to meet a national security or law enforcement requirement];  (b) to comply with legal process or professional standards;  (c) to protect our rights, privacy, safety or property and/or those of our clients;  or (d) in a merger, acquisition or asset sale. 

As noted above, our service providers* are located within the continental United States of America.

Third-Party Sites

This Privacy Statement does not address, and we are not responsible for, the privacy, information, or other practices of any third parties, including any third party operating any Web site or Service to which the Site links.  The inclusion of a link on our Site does not imply endorsement of the linked site or service by us. However, please note that the only linked sites on our Site are to the Client Portal provided by the service provider* noted above and to the taxing authorities Internal Revenue Service and California Franchise Tax Board.

Data Security

The security of your personal information is important to us.  We seek to use reasonable physical (ex: security alarm system, limited key entry, bank lock boxes in and out of state for encrypted backups), technological (ex: password protection, network firewall, authentication mechanisms, no use of laptops or phones for preparation), and administrative safeguards, (ex: confidentiality agreements, training, procedures that limit access to and use of data) to protect the information we process.  However, no method of transferring data over the Internet or of storing electronic, or paper data, is completely secure.  Therefore, while we strive to use reasonable and appropriate means to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee absolute security.

Data Integrity

We possess personal information only in ways compatible with the purpose for which it was provided to us, as concurrently and/or subsequently authorized by the individual or company, or as otherwise permitted by applicable law

Access and Correction

If an individual becomes aware that information we maintain about that individual is inaccurate, or if an individual would like to update or review their information, the individual may contact us using the contact information below.  We will take reasonable steps to permit individuals to correct, amend, or delete [delete if permissible by law or regulation] information that is demonstrated to be inaccurate. [Note that for any amendments to tax returns already submitted, prior information will be retained for the period required by professional and IRS standards to show how the original tax return was created.]  We may limit or deny access to personal information where providing such access would be unreasonably burdensome or inappropriate under the circumstances.  All requests to access or change personal information will be handled in accordance with applicable legal requirements.  Note, also, that all original documents provided to us by non-electronic means are returned to the individual, for them to store appropriately, after completion of Services.

To request deletion of, access to, or to make changes to information, or to otherwise exercise any of your rights in this paragraph, please send us an email at privacy@mrusscpa.com.  MWRCPAI will take steps to address your request to the extent consistent with and permitted by laws, regulations, and professional standards applicable to MWRCPAI and our own internal policies.  If you are a client and request that we delete or limit the use of your personal information required to perform our Services, we may not be able to complete our engagement. 

_  _  _

Notice to California Residents under CCPA

Pursuant to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), MWRCPAI makes the following disclosures regarding the personal information collected from a “consumer” within the last twelve (12 months):
 

Category of

personal

information

Category of source

from which data

is collected

Purpose of

collection

Category of third

parties to whom

data is potentially

disclosed

Contact information(such as first and last name, email address, mail address or phone number), and current employer and job title

Directly from “consumer”; directly or indirectly from our clients or their agents

To respond to requests; to send information about MWRCPAI’s services; to send administrative information or notices; to connect with an engagement

Service providers

Personal information collected in the course of providing services and in connection with pre-engagement activities

Directly from “consumer” directly or indirectly from our clients or their agents

To fulfill a contract for services; to perform pre-engagement activities; to enforce our rights arising from any contract, including billing

Service providers

 

This site does NOT use any of the following cookie types: Personalization, Analytics, Performance (other than possibly for IT security), Survey, Social, and/or Marketing.  This site does NOT use beacons.

MWRCPAI  has not sold the personal information of any “consumer” in the twelve (12) months preceding the effective date of this Privacy Statement.  [Note that the prior sentence is the required disclosure per CCPA.  Please note that MWRCPAI has never sold any personal information.]

If you are a California resident, under the CCPA you have the right to request:

  • the categories and specific pieces of personal information MWRCPAI has collected about you
  • the categories of sources from which your personal information is collected
  • the business or commercial purpose of collecting or selling your personal information
  • the categories of third parties with whom MWRCPAI shares your personal information
  • the categories of personal information that MWRCPAI has sold about you and the categories of third parties to whom the personal information was sold [if applicable, which as noted above, is not applicable
  • deletion of your personal information [to the extent permitted by other law]
  • an opt-out of having your personal information disclosed or sold to third parties.

To submit a request, or designate an authorized agent to make a request under the CCPA on your behalf, please contact us at privacy@mrusscpa.com or (760)591-0500.  To verify your identity when you submit a request, we will match the identifying information you provide us to the personal information we have about you.  If you have a past or current relationship with MWRCPAI, we will also verify your identity through our existing records. 

Right to Non-discrimination

In addition, MWRCPAI will NOT discriminate against you in the event you exercise any of the aforementioned rights under CCPA, including but not limited to by:

  • denying services to you
  • charging different fees or rates for services
  • providing a different level or quality of services to you

_  _  _

Enforcement and Dispute Resolution

We will investigate and attempt to resolve complaints and disputes regarding our use and disclosure of personal information in accordance with the Privacy Statement.  We encourage interested persons to raise any concerns with us using the contact information below.  Any employee who we determine is in violation of our privacy policies will be subject to disciplinary process.

We do not provide services to residents of Europe.  Our services are provided only to residents of the United States of America.

Merger, Change in Ownership and other Business Transitions

In the event MWRCPAI goes through a business transition, such as a merger, or the acquisition or sale of all or a portion of its assets, your personal information may be among the assets transferred.  If such a transition were to occur,  professional standards would be followed by all parties with signed assurances/contracts of the transferee(s) obtained prior to such transfer to assure the secure transfer of such assets.

Privacy Statement Changes

MWRCPAI reserves the right to amend or modify this Privacy Statement from time to time.  We will post any revised Privacy Statement on this Site, or a similar Web site that replaces this Site.  By continuing to use our Site, you agree that the terms of this Privacy Statement as of the effective date will apply to information previously collected or collected in the future as permitted by law.

Minors

This Site is not designed for or directed at persons under the age of 18 years, and we do not intentionally collect information from anyone under the age of 18 through this Site.

How to Contact Us

Questions, comments, or complaints about MWRCPAI’s Privacy Statement or data collection and processing practices can be emailed to privacy@mrusscpa.com or by writing to us using the contact details below:

California Professional Corporation Mailing Address:

Michael Russ, CPA, Inc.

Attn: Privacy

1125 Linda Vista Dr., Suite 101

San Marcos CA  92078-3819