A Message from CEO Selma Brinson
Doing the right thing: Our values, our culture and what it means for you the customer.
Tax season brings confusion and anxiety for most taxpayers, but you can ease the stress with these simple tips.
1. Don't claim dependents that are not valid. If you can't show proof that the dependent lived with you and/or that you took care of the dependent, then don't claim him/her as a dependent on your tax return.
2. Get organized. Don't wait until the April 15 rush to gather receipts and other paperwork. Throughout the year gather, save and file any paperwork you might need. Examples include deductible expenses, childcare expenses and retirement account withdrawls.
3. Maximize deductions. An example includes medical expenses which must be over 7.5% of your income to qualify for a deduction.
4. Save receipts from non-cash chariable donations to charities such as Goodwill. Your donations to your church can also qualify as a deduction. Ask your church for you tithe and offering year-end report.
5. State income tax refunds are taxable and must be reported as income in the following tax year. Gambling winnings are also taxable income and must be reports to the IRS as well.
6. Contribute the maximum amount to your retirement account to reduce your tax bill.
7. Hire a professional. Your tax preparer should be a Registered Tax Return Preparer with year-round availability.
8. Prepare for your appointment. Make your preparer's job easier and speed up your refund when you take all the necessary paperwork to your initial appointment. You will need your organized and tallied receipts, proof of income and social security numbers for any dependents.
9. Ask for an extension. If you can't complete and file your return on time, an extension prevents penalties and interest.
10. If you choose to claim self-employment, you must have proof of income and expenses. Examples: Buy a two dollar receipt book and give a receipt at the point of each sale and maintain a calendar of appointments, mileage log and client list.
You should not wake up on April 15th and think, "Oh I have to do my taxes." It is something that one should continuously prepare for throughout the year.
Are you ready for the 2018 tax season? These 10 tips can help reduce your stress. For additional assistance, call a Registed Tax Return Preparer at Brinson Tax Service at 901-729-7244.