Get Ready for Taxes: Plan Ahead for 2018 Filing Season to Avoid Refund Delays

  The Internal Revenue Service advised taxpayers about steps they can take now to ensure smooth processing of their 2017 tax return and avoid a delay in getting their refund next year. This is the first in a series of reminders to help taxpayers get ready for the upcoming tax filing season. Additionally, the IRS has a special page on its website with steps to take now for the 2018…

Know Your Taxpayer Bill of Rights

Every taxpayer has a set of fundamental rights and the IRS has an obligation to protect them. The “Taxpayer Bill of Rights” groups the taxpayer rights found in the tax code into 10 categories. Know these rights when interacting with the IRS. A good way to learn about them is by reading Publication 1, Your Rights as a Taxpayer. Below are the descriptions of each right, as listed in Publication 1: The Right…

Learn about Tax Benefits for Education

The beginning of the school year is a good time for a reminder of the tax benefits for education. These benefits can help offset qualifying education costs. Here is information about two tax credits available to those who pay higher education costs for themselves, a spouse or a dependent.   The American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) is: Worth a maximum benefit up to $2,500 per eligible student. Only available for the…

Taxpayers Should Review Their Withholding; Avoid Having Too Much or Too Little Federal Income Tax

The Internal Revenue Service encourage taxpayers to consider checking their tax withholding, keeping in mind several factors that could affect potential refunds or taxes they may owe in 2018. Reviewing the amount of taxes withheld can help taxpayers avoid having too much or too little federal income tax taken from their paychecks. Having the correct amount taken out helps to move taxpayers closer to a zero balance at the end…

Check Withholding Now to Avoid Surprises at Tax Time

The federal income tax is a pay-as-you-go system. Employers generally withhold tax from workers’ wages. Taxpayers also often have taxes withheld from certain other income including pensions, bonuses, commissions and gambling winnings. People who do not pay tax through withholding, like the self-employed, generally pay estimated tax. In addition, those who earn income such as dividends, interest, capital gains, rent and royalties are usually required to make estimated tax payments.…

Making the Most out of Miscellaneous Deductions

Miscellaneous deductions are tax breaks that generally don’t fit into a particular tax category.  They can help reduce taxable income and the amount of taxes owed.  For example, some employeescan deduct certain work expenses like uniforms as miscellaneous deductions.  To do that, they must itemize their deductions instead of taking the standard deduction on their tax return.   Here are several tips from the IRS about miscellaneous deductions: The Two…

4 Secrets to Separating Personal & Business Expenses

Regardless of the type of business you run, you should separate your personal and business expenses. Not only can this make analyzing your financial situation easier and possibly save you money on taxes, it also ensures you stay on good terms with the IRS (who have specific guidelines to follow). While some personal and business expenses tend to blend together, figuring out how to set boundaries between the two doesn’t have to…