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What to Know About Filing Taxes.

Know how to file taxes and know the tax deadline.

One should know the basic terms of filing taxes, concepts, and best practices.

Being able to understand these key elements can help reduce your tax or gain a larger tax refund. This shall help in the failure to file or late payment fees.

Whether this is your first time or 100th time filing taxes, the following is what to know about doing it the right way, along with answering common tax questions.

When are taxes due?

Tax Day is typically April 15th. Now if that date lands on a weekend or Emancipation Day, observed in the District of Columbia, Tax Day may be pushed back to April 16, April 17 or even April 18. While it may be nice to have a few extra days to file taxes, most tax filers will not wait until the final weekend to submit tax returns. Experts say to make sure no paperwork or important forms are lost in the mad scramble to file on time, savvy tax filers will begin to work on their tax forms well in advance.

What if I miss the tax deadline?

If one misses the deadline, there is no need to panic. The next step hinges on whether you anticipate a refund or owe taxes.

If one expects a refund, you are still legally required to file your return on time. Granted the IRS will not be likely to harass you over the fact if they owe you a refund. There is a three-year grace period to file a tax refund where you are due to a return.

Now if you owe taxes, you are in a stickier situation. Delaying a tax payment and filing and can result in financial penalties. There is the late-filing penalty of up to 5 percent of unpaid taxes each month, up to a maximum of 25 percent. This is will include a penalty to pay on time of 0.5 percent of unpaid taxes. Interest will also continue to accrue on the unpaid amount, compounding daily until the bill is paid off.

How do I get a tax extension?

If one is worried about missing the tax deadline, a great option is filing an extension. This can push your due date back six months, typically to October 15. Filing an extension can help you to avoid the failure-to-file penalties if the April tax deadline is missed.

How to file taxes?

How about visiting a professional tax preparer?

Some taxpayers will choose to file their taxes online through free online programs. One can check the IRS website for software.  There are free programs for simple tax forms.

For complex forms, visiting a tax professional is recommended.

Here at Flat Top Bookkeeping, we are here to help answer any questions/concerns you may have. We look forward to hearing from you!

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