Last Minute Tax Tips

April 9, 2013

The clock is ticking and April 15 is almost here. Are your taxes done? If you are still in denial, it is time to sit down and figure out what you need to do in order to meet the deadline. Here are a few last minute tips and reminders to help ease the stress:

April 15, 2013 is the deadline for individuals. But what does that really mean?

If you are mailing your return, it means that your taxes must be postmarked before midnight on April 15, 2013. You really don’t want to end up standing in line at the post office on the eve of the deadline, so another option is to EFile your return on the IRS website.

If you do not submit your return by April 15, a late filing penalty of 5 percent of the unpaid tax is added for each month your return is late. If you cannot file by April 15, file for an extension to avoid late penalties. However, it is important to note that you still must pay at least 90 percent of your tax by the original due date of April 15, or you will still be subject to the late penalty.

Beware of scams. The IRS has released their annual “Dirty Dozen” list of common tax scams. Although these scams happen year-round, they often peak during the tax season. The IRS wants you to beware of the scams, and has them listed on their website. Remember: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Check the status of your refund. If you are lucky enough to be getting a refund instead of paying, you can check the status of your refund on the IRS’s “Where’s My Refund” website. The IRS tries to issue refunds within 21 days of receiving your tax filing.

Use Free File. If your income was $57,000 or less, you qualify to use brand-name tax software or online fillable forms on the IRS website.

For more tax time tips visit the IRS website and read about their top 10 tax time tips.

This post was written by Kimberly Riccardi from Colorado PERA.

(Would you like to write a guest post for The Dime? Email us at dimecontact@copera.org.)

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