fbpx

What will you do when your money works for you? | Call 1-800-584-3652 | Account

Getting a Jump on Tax Season

What should you bring to your preparer?

Provided by Kim Gaxiola

You can file your federal tax return starting January 20.

IRS filing season will start right on time in 2015, and there is wisdom in filing your 1040 well before April 15. You can get it out of the way earlier, and if you e-file, you can put yourself in position for an earlier refund.1

What should you gather up for your tax professional?

If you want to save time and possibly money along with it, come to your preparer’s office ready with the appropriate paperwork. If you own a business, that list includes all W-2s and 1099-MISC forms you get from clients, any 1099-INT and K-1 forms displaying interest income, your Schedule C and P&L reports, and any and all paperwork you can round up detailing your expenses – your personal expenses too, not only business costs but also any tuition, medical and miscellaneous ones. If you have made charitable contributions worth itemizing, that paperwork needs to reach your preparer. The same goes for documents detailing mortgage interest, other forms of interest paid, and any tax already paid.2

If you have receipt management software, your preparer will love you for using it (beats getting a manila envelope, file folder or shoebox full of receipts to sort through). If a calamity or an accident destroyed a bunch of your business records, remember that the IRS may give you a break – but your preparer needs solid proof of the misfortune to try and make a case to the IRS and get you some leniency.

What are some things people too often forget to bring? Social Security numbers for new babies (and taxpayer-ID numbers and contact information for the nannies of those babies). Logs of unreimbursed mileage. Real estate stuff, too: closing letters related to a refi, receipts for real estate taxes (assuming they haven’t been paid through escrow).3

 

If you received any health insurance subsidies, you may want to wait until February.

Did you pay for your own health insurance in 2014? Do you remember how you had to estimate your 2014 income when you applied for coverage? If you got a subsidy, it was based on that estimate, and an estimate is by definition inexact. Some taxpayers ended up earning more than the incomes they estimated to the exchanges, some less. That could mean one of two things: a big 2014 tax refund, or owing thousands more in taxes.4

If you pay for your own health coverage, the exchange at which you bought it should send you Form 1095-A by January 31. Form 1095-A will list how your household self-insures: who pays premiums, and the amount of any monthly subsidies. Your preparer can plug these details into Form 8962, which explains the breakdown on insurance, subsidies and income for your household to the IRS. If you were only self-insured for part of 2014, your preparer must note any subsidy payments by the month.4

 

Should you jump to a new tax professional?

If he or she is aloof, sloppy, or seems more like a file clerk than someone interested in minimizing your tax burden, maybe you should switch. There are some tax preparers who outsource their work to people overseas, and you probably don’t want that to happen to your return. We are early in 2015, and if you really have the itch to switch, consider taking your 2013 return to 2-3 candidates – not only to get a tax prep quote, but to see if they have insight on your situation that your current preparer lacks.5

In getting a jump on tax season, you can get that bothersome item off your to-do list sooner and focus on the more exciting parts of your career, business or life.

Disclosures:

TechGirl Financial is a part of Discover Financial Happiness. Kim Gaxiola, CFP® Registered representative, securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., Broker-dealer, member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisor representative, Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a registered investment advisor. Cambridge and TechGirl Financial by Discover Financial Happiness are not affiliated.

TechGirl Financial by Discover Financial Happiness | 111 North Market Street suite 300| San Jose, CA 95113 P:800.584.3652

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment.

 

Tech Girl Financial is a part of Discover Financial Happiness. Registered representative, securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., Broker-dealer, member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisor representative, Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a registered investment advisor. Cambridge and Discover Financial Happiness are not affiliated.
Discover Financial Happiness | 111 North Market Street suit 300| San Jose, CA 95113
This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks. The NASDAQ Composite Index is an unmanaged, market-weighted index of all over-the-counter common stocks traded on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (NYMEX) is the world’s largest physical commodity futures exchange and the preeminent trading forum for energy and precious metals, with trading conducted through two divisions – the NYMEX Division, home to the energy, platinum, and palladium markets, and the COMEX Division, on which all other metals trade. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards. This material represents an assessment of the market environment at a specific point in time and is not intended to be a forecast of future events, or a guarantee of future results. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. Market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional.

Citations.
1 – forbes.com/sites/robertwood/2014/12/29/irs-announces-2014-tax-return-filing-opens-starting-january-20-2015/ [12/29/14]
2 – outright.com/blog/what-do-you-need-to-bring-to-your-accountant-at-tax-time/ [3/18/14]
3 – foxbusiness.com/personal-finance/2014/03/18/what-documents-should-take-to-tax-preparer/ [3/18/14]
4 – money.cnn.com/2015/01/02/pf/taxes/obamacare-income-tax-subsidies/ [1/2/15]
5 – dailyfinance.com/2014/12/25/hire-cpa-prepare-taxes/ [12/25/14]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Lean In To Retirement

Check out TechGirl Financial's Article Series on how to "Lean In To Retirement".

About the Founder

Kim will put you at ease with your financial planning and help you to create a clear picture of your financial future!

Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA's BrokerCheck

Contact Us

Northern California
111 N. Market Street, Suite 300
San Jose, CA 95113
Toll-Free:  800-584-3652
Contact Us

Stay Informed

Get the latest financial news & more!

Disclosure

Securities offered through Registered Representatives of Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC. Advisors Services through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, a Registered Investment Advisor.

Tech Girl Financial is not affiliated with Cambridge. Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA's BrokerCheck.
This communication is strictly intended for individuals residing in the states of AZ, CA, CO, FL, ID, IL, IN, KY, MI, MT, NC, NH, NJ, NV, OR, SC, SD, VA, WI. No offers may be made or accepted from any resident outside the specific states referenced.

© 2020 Tech Girl Financial, All Rights Reserved

Close

Sign Up for Free Updates!

Receive free updates directly to your inbox.

%d bloggers like this: