Get Ready Because Tax Time Is On The Way
Tax time is coming and there’s not a darn thing you can do to stop it or slow down its arrival.
It’s just a fact of life. You can face facts or pretend it isn’t going to happen and find yourself in a flurry of anxiety and confusion when you just can’t deny it any longer.
The more prepared you can be ahead of time, the better. So, while the majority of people are crowding the malls looking for stuff to put under the holiday tree, you might take the time to do a little preparation and get organized, so you won’t be in for any surprises from the tax man.
Here are a few things to help. Make a list and check it twice and tax time may be a little nicer!
Make Estimated Tax Payments
If you are self-employed and have substantial untaxed non-wage income, this is a great time to check and see if you’ve made quarterly estimated tax payments. This includes taxable Social Security benefits as well as untaxed pension and annuity income. If you haven’t, go ahead and send in at least a partial payment of what you owe. And, you will have a little more time to make another since the deadline for the last estimated tax payment isn’t due until January 15th.
Organize Records Gather Documents
Make sure your record keeping system is in order be it electronic or paper. You want to make sure all the important information is in one place. This includes copies of filed returns and all supporting documents for at least three years: W-2s, 1099s, other income documents, records documenting all virtual currency transactions and 1095-As.
It’s also a good idea to make sure also that each employer, bank or other payer (not to mention the IRS and, for legal names, the Social Security Administration) has your current mailing or email address. If you’ve moved or have a new email address it’s important that your current address is on file with everyone who sends you money and 1099’s.
Renew Your ITIN
If you don’t have a Social Security number and need to file a tax return in 2020, you’ll want to make sure your ITIN has not expired or will not expire before you file in 2020. The IRS recommends you submit your renewal application now to prevent potential delays in the processing of your return. Be aware that any ITIN with middle digits 83, 84, 85, 86 or 87 expires at the end of this year. Also, any ITIN not used on a return in the past three years will expire. ITINs with middle digits 70 through 82 that expired in 2016, 2017 or 2018 can also be renewed. Use a W-7; it typically takes about seven weeks to receive an ITIN assignment letter from the IRS, but it can take up to 11 weeks if you wait until peak tax filing season to submit the form.
Tax Season Can Be Naughty Or Nice
It’s ultimately your decision how smoothly tax season goes for you. By making a few preparations and checking that your papers are organized, you’ll be much happier and less surprised. We can help if you are delinquent in filing your tax returns or need help with any communications you’ve received from the IRS. Give us a call to let us see how we can put you in a better position with the tax man.