TaxSlayer Blog is your source for tax preparation news, tips and advice.
We are now past the filing deadline for ALL 2011 tax returns. If you haven’t filed, chances are you are going to face repercussion from the IRS for your indiscretion. Keeping that in mind, the penalty will continue to get worse the longer that you wait so it is best to clean up your mess before it grows even larger. There are certain situations related to filing later that you must consider. Take a look at the details below. • Filing late – The Basics Filing a past due return is the easiest part of the process. You can even prepare the return on TaxSlayer.com and print out the forms to be mailed in. Feel free to contact our support team or visit the website for more information. Fill the return out just as you would have before and you are on your way. Keep in mind if you are owed a refund and/or the earned income credit you must file the return within 3 years to receive it…why wait to receive money that is YOURS?!? Also, if you are self-employed you could forfeit the Social security benefits that are due to you if you don’t file. These benefits are calculated based on your filing history. • Always pay in full If it is financially reasonable always make in effort to pay the taxes that you owe, along with late filing penalties and interest, in FULL. By doing so you can save yourself the penalties and interest that may result from continuing to put off payment, the longer you wait, the heftier they get. • Payment options Payment options are wide ranging and can help anyone. For starters you can pay via credit card or debit card. You can also have the funds directly withdrawn from your account. Most IRS offices will even accept cash. In most cases you can also contact the IRS to set up a payment schedule, it is better to set this up sooner than later and get it over with. • Sitting tight and the repercussions Say you choose to sit it out and not file your taxes…you could be in for a world of trouble. For starters the IRS will continue to assess penalties and interest until the amount due is paid. These can add up quickly and far eclipse the original liability. In many cases the IRS will calculate your amount due based on a substitute return. This return will be calculated based on information they receive from other sources and in all likelihood will not come out nearly as favorable as a self-prepared return due to the lack of exemptions etc. Once the IRS establishes an amount due they can place a levy on your wages or bank account and can even place a lien on your property. Oh yea…they can always toss you in jail. In summary, don’t wait to file your return, just because things look bad , they can get WAY worse. Log in to TaxSlayer today and get started on filing your past due returns…don’t wait.
While many of us mark April 15th on our calendars as the deadline for filing tax returns. The IRS however does not close efile until mid-October before turning things over to the next filing season, this year that efile deadline is October 17th. The majority of tax payers will still be subject to this deadline and any returns filed after that point will have to be mailed. However, in response to recent natural disasters the IRS has extended this deadline to certain tax payers in affected areas. From the IRS press release: The Internal Revenue Service today reminded taxpayers affected by Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Irene, Tropical Storm Lee and the Texas wildfires that they have until Oct. 31 to meet certain tax filing and payment obligations. E-file, which will close for all other taxpayers following the Oct. 17 extension filing deadline, will be open through the end of October to any taxpayer who lives or has a business in areas granted tax relief because of Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Irene, the Texas wildfires or Tropical Storm Lee in New York and Pennsylvania. Special Instructions for e-Filers The IRS encouraged any taxpayer who wants to include a payment with the tax return to e-File by Oct. 20. Because of year-end programming changes, IRS e-File will not accept returns that include payments after Oct 20. E-file returns that include a payment after that date will be rejected, but the IRS offers other options for these taxpayers to still e-file but pay separately by using: • EFTPS (The Electronic Federal Tax Payment System) • credit or debit card • check or money order These guidelines apply to e-File returns only. Payments accompanying paper returns are not affected. If you have questions about how this change may affect you, feel free to contact our support team via e-mail. Don’t forget that TaxSlayer will open for registration in late October. You can begin entering information for your 2011 tax return. Also, you can use our refund calculator to estimate what you refund will be based on your current paycheck information. Visit our Free Tax Calculator by clicking here.
Eating out can be enjoyable but also quite expensive. Luckily, there are ways you can easily save money when dinning out and make it a more affordable experience. Take Advantage of Freebies Many restaurants offer a reward, such as a $5 off coupon on your birthday, for signing up for their newsletter. What does your favorite restaurant offer? Say No to “the extras” Next time you go out to eat, try to pass on ordering a drink, appetizer or desert (unless you have a coupon) and just enjoy your entrée. These are all fun things to order in addition to your entrée, but the truth is that they aren’t necessary and can add up quickly! Let’s face it – drinking tap water has never killed anyone. Order Strategically If you or your spouse doesn’t typically eat a lot, try splitting an entrée or even ordering from the kids menu. Or, if you find yourself having food leftover, make sure you take it home and save it for another meal. What does your family do to make eating out more affordable?
Here are a few ideas on how to make sure you make the most of your household purchases: • Laundry Detergent – You don’t have to use a lot of detergent to clean your clothes. Try using less than the amount that the manufacturer recommends. • Clothes – Try hanging your clothes after washing them, instead of putting them in the dryer. • Food – Store your food properly, don’t waste your money due to food spoilage. • Razor blades – Try drying your blade after using it. This will help delay dullness. Does your family have any tricks for making items around the house last longer?