Our tax system in the U.S. is set up on both a federal and state level; federal income taxes are processed through the Internal Revenue Service and each state has its own taxing authority. The month of April, which is coming up quickly, is a significant month for the U.S. tax system, which includes the due date of April 18, 2023 for all tax returns to be submitted. For those who will not be making that deadline, this is the date in which an extension should be filed. Extensions are available in 6-month increments and are free to request.
The month of March is National Clean Up Your I.R.S. Act Month and focuses on wrapping up our tax returns well before April 18, 2023 to avoid last-minute stress and the need to file for an extension. With this in mind, below are some tips to help those meet this fast-approaching deadline:
- Begin the Process Early – Instead of waiting until April to begin the tax filing process, start the process early. This can help to create a less demanding approach to gathering and organizing paperwork. When having to do this gathering last-minute, things can get misplaced, confusing, and a lot more stressful.
- Keep Documents Organized – Consider having a folder or storing electronic financial information on a USB drive for each tax year and keeping that information in a secure location. If you would ever need to reference something from a previous year, that information will then be easy to locate.
- Choose a Deadline – Make a personal deadline for your tax return earlier than the actual due date. This can be accomplished by choosing a day prior to your own due date to only focus on gathering tax items. If taking this approach, we recommend not scheduling other tasks that day and keeping the majority of the day devoted to what you need to get done.
RELATED: Read 5 Tips for a Stronger Financial Strategy in 2023.
- Consult With a Trusted Accountant Regularly – If you do not have a trusted accountant, perhaps finding one for this year’s tax return would be beneficial so that you can begin consulting with them during the 2022 tax return season and on. Once you have a trusted accountant, it is helpful to consult with them during the year to keep them up-to-date on any significant changes that may affect your taxes such as divorce, children, inheritances, etc. When consulting with the accountant, it is also a great time to reach out to your experienced financial advisor so you can discuss changes that may affect your financial plan, as well, to ensure you’re on track to meet your goals.
- Consider Help – IRS.gov shares multiple free options for help with tax returns, including the following:
- IRS Free File is available to any person or family who earned $73,000 or less in 2022.
- For taxpayers who are comfortable completing their own tax forms, Free File Fillable Forms may be a good option.
- MilTax is a free tax resource available to the military community, and it’s offered through the Department of Defense.
- Qualified taxpayers can also find free one-on-one tax preparation help nationwide through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly.
We hope the above tips provide guidance and motivation to help you meet your tax return deadline, and that you get through it feeling organized and stress-free.
If you have questions about the information above, or if we can help with your financial planning in any way, call us today at 412-630-6000. Our experienced financial advisors are ready to help.
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