Uncle Sam Wants You… To Pay Up!

Uncle Sam Wants You… To Pay Up!

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By, Mordechai Zimberg, Controller 

With panic in full swing for millions of U.S. tax payers, there is good news for those who procrastinated in getting their taxes in order. Taxes are typically due on April 15, but this year that date falls on a Saturday and the following Monday is a government holiday. This lucky break in the calendar means this year the filing deadline to file 2016 taxes is Tuesday, April 18. In a previous blog post, Vantage Agora explained the specifics of the later filing date and this blog will explore some other interesting facts regarding this year’s tax season.

Before continuing, Vantage Agora would like to provide a public service to our procrastinating readers who are yet to file their 2016 taxes. For those who haven’t filed their taxes as of this blog posting (Monday, April 10) here are 3 Quick Tips:

  1. You have 8 days left to either file your taxes or file an extension. Filers who apply for a 6-month extension should know a filing extension does not mean you can wait until the extension date to pay the taxes. All taxes must be paid by the deadline, if not paid, interest, and penalties are sure to follow.
  2. Just in case you need every last minute, use this link you to find the nearest US. Post Office that is open until 11:59pm on Tuesday, April 18.
  3. Be cautious with the amount of time you need to get to the post office before midnight on April 1 because you will certainly not be alone in your desperate attempt to beat the clock. Expect large crowds at the U.S. Post Offices that have extended hours!

We have found some interesting statistics from the 2015 and 2016 tax filing season that give us the ability to predict how long the lines will be for those waiting until the very last moment for the 2017 filing deadline.

(Source: United States Internal Revenue Service – www.irs.gov )

 

In addition to procrastinating to file taxes, we explored two other additional common pitfalls:

  1. Many people who self-prepare their tax filings have some portion of their income that comes in the form of a 1099 self-employment status. Oftentimes these Do-It-Yourself (DIYers) either underestimate their tax liability or do not consider the estimated 15% tax rate that is not withheld. Finding this out at the time of preparing your taxes, late in the season leaves many DIYers with a rather large and unexpected tax liability.
  2. Also, DIYers tend to use an off-the-shelf tax return software. Not all DIY tax return software is created equally. The low-priced options typically do not include city returns. The tax payer may not know that city tax is required to be paid. Usually the city tax is a liability that is even larger than the federal liability since there are not many credits available.

To avoid the urge to procrastinate and other tax season pitfalls we suggest you use OX Accounting at Vantage Agora. Our Certified Public Accountants have the strategies you need to be better prepared next year. Start today to maximize your deductions and avoid any future problems. Call us at 888.246.7211 x 127 or email us to see how to get started.

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