We generally don’t think much about taxes except during the annual tax season. It’s probably the most dreaded time of the year for millions of Americans, yet we circle it on our calendars, along with holidays and birthdays. Yup you guessed it, tax season!! Here are some helpful facts to keep in mind about taxes! Here at Capital Tax Service we can help you out with any questions regarding your taxes!
You may not have to file a federal income tax return. Not every person who receives income during the calendar year has to file a federal income tax return. There are a number of factors that affect whether you have to file including how much you earned – and the source of that income – as well as your filing status and your age.
Using the chart below, choose your filing status, your age and your gross income for the year. If your gross income is above the threshold for your age and filing status, you should file a federal income tax return. These rules apply if no other person claims you on their federal income tax return.
Due dates matter. If you don’t file and pay by your due dates, you can get socked with penalties and interest, which can add up quickly. Your employer and financial institutions have their own set of due dates to get info to you. The IRS also has due dates: there are limits on how much time can pass before the IRS may no longer assess and collect on federal income taxes, sometimes called the statute of limitations. Here’s the kicker: if you don’t file your return, there is no statute of limitations. That means that the IRS can generally assess and collect at any time. To avoid that result, file your return as soon as possible – even if it’s past the due date.
Time flies! Before you know it Tax day comes around be sure to prepare your taxes before the annual due date!
A good tax preparer doesn’t have to break the bank. Pricing is important but don’t hire just on cost. Ask questions. Get a referral from a friend and check out local ads. Finally, tax pros who prepare returns for compensation must have a PTIN; the IRS has a database that can help you find one near you.
- If your only income in 2016 was from Social Security OR if your gross income is less than $10,350 if filing single ($20,700 if married filing jointly) then you may not need to file a federal income tax return in 2017. You may still need to file if you are self-employed or if you received a premium tax credit payment.
- If your taxable income for 2016 is less than $100,000 and does not include tips not reported on a form W-2, then you may be able to file form 1040EZ or form 1040-A. Additional rules and exceptions apply.
Can I file electronically? More than 1 billion individual tax returns have been processed since the debut of electronic filing in 1990. It’s the fastest way to get your refund and tends to result in fewer math errors. It may also be required: a paid preparer who prepares and files more than ten client returns must generally file returns electronically unless the client opts out.
When will I receive a copy of my return? It’s not unreasonable to leave your preparer’s office without a copy of your completed return; assembly may be required. However, you should receive a complete copy of your return within a reasonable amount of time following your appointment. If your preparer can’t offer a window of time to expect the copy, it might be indicative of a time management problem. If your preparer can’t promise you a copy at all, run, don’t walk away: you will need a copy for your own records.