Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Tax preparation starts in earnest this week

It’s an ideal week for taxpayers to begin gathering their war chests for the season about to dawn.

The Internal Revenue Service is defining income tax season as commencing Jan. 23 and extending to April 18. The reasons for the extra few days are April 15 falling on a Saturday and a federal holiday observed in Washington, D.C., that will occur on April 16.

Refunds coming to those with earned income and additional child care tax credits won’t be issued until after Feb. 15. That will allow the IRS to conduct checks against fraud.

Improved software coming online this season should help prevent identity theft.

Those who fail to comply with the Affordable Care Act will essentially face twice the penalty as last year.

It’s important for taxpayers to speak early on with their CPAs to avoid surprises.

If you have moved, tell the post office, tell your employer and tell the IRS.

Those who have made a name change should notify the Social Security Administration, since the IRS will go by the information that agency affirms.

It’s going to delay the processing of your return.

Receipts from Christmas gifts and other important documents should not be discarded. Personal data contained on old computers and other electronic devices should be wiped clean for those who received new gear for Christmas.