With the tax deadline, April 17, 2012, creeping up around the corner, Tax Defense Network knows many taxpayers have yet to start gathering the documents they need to properly file their taxes. Tax Defense Network cannot stress enough how important it is to file income taxes on time in order to avoid a late filing tax penalty, as well as any other penalties and interest that may be incurred if the IRS assesses a tax debt. To help taxpayers file their taxes on time, Tax Defense Network has released its top five tax preparation tips for this tax season.
Tax Defense Network: 5 Tax Prep Tips for Procrastinators
- Tax Defense Network Tax Tips #1: Gather all documents needed in order to complete your income tax forms.
These documents include W2s, 1099s, bank statements, loans and receipts to be able to claim tax deductions and credits. The most common documents taxpayers use to file their income tax are W2 forms, which should have been sent from the employer to the employee at the beginning of 2012.
Every year, many taxpayers claim to have never received their W2s from previous employers. If a missing W2 or 1099 is preventing a taxpayer from filing their income taxes, Tax Defense Network recommends filing an Extension of Time to File, so that the taxpayer can request a copy of the document directly from the IRS after the filing deadline. Tax Defense Network warns that if an extension is not requested and a taxpayer does not file on time they risk getting assessed a tax debt.
- Tax Defense Network Tax Tips #2: Decide if filing a Standard or Itemized Deduction is more beneficial.
A Standard Deduction is a fixed dollar amount that the government allows all individuals to claim based on their age and filing status, among other factors including whether the taxpayer is considered legally blind or is claimed as a dependent.
If the deductions claimed this year exceed the standard deduction given to everyone, Tax Defense Network urges taxpayers to consider itemizing their deductions. Itemized Deductions include medical expenses, state property tax, charitable gifts, and mortgage interest and student loan interest payments. Tax Defense Network wants to remind taxpayers they will need to have proof of all deductions claimed in case of an audit by the IRS.
- Tax Defense Network Tax Tips #3: Make sure you take advantage of all available tax credits.
Tax Defense Network wants all taxpayers to take advantage of the tax credits that are available. For taxpayers that made a certain amount of income the previous year, they may qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit. Those with children can claim the Child Tax Credit, while those who bought their first home in 2011 will benefit from the First-Time Homebuyers Credit. Homeowners who made home improvements that qualify under the United States Energy Star program. Tax Defense Network wants to make sure all taxpayers research these and other tax credits to ensure you are getting all of the credits you qualify for.
- Tax Defense Network Tax Tips #4: File electronically and select Direct Deposit
For most taxpayers, filing electronically is easier than paper filing, and much more convenient. Also, by opting for the option of direct deposit, any funds due from the government are received within 2 weeks of filing as opposed to up to 6 weeks if the filing is mailed. For taxpayers that have complicated business taxes or multiple properties, Tax Defense Network believes those taxpayers should seek professional tax preparation.
- Tax Defense Network Tax Tips #5: Contact a tax professional immediately if you owe the IRS a substantial tax debt.
While Tax Defense Network knows many taxpayers who owe the IRS will be able to apply for a payment plan successfully without much trouble, some taxpayers who owe a large sum of $10,000 or more will find it much more difficult to negotiate with the IRS. Tax Defense Network suggests that taxpayers speak with a tax debt professional before submitting any financial documents to the IRS.
Tax Defense Network has given these tax preparation tips for taxpayers that have yet to begin filing their taxes. I found these tips so valuable, I decided to post for my fellow taxpayers so they too can benefit from the advice of Tax Defense Network. For taxpayers who find themselves having a large tax bill after April 17, 2012, call the IRS Hitman Team
or fill out the form
now for a free consultation.