News and Updates
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Peruse the News section below filled with helpful tips regarding tax preparation. Doing my job well doesn’t end at preparing your taxes - it extends past the office and into the trends, changes and news regarding anything that could impact your tax return. I’m especially proud of staying up to date on new ways to help my clients manage their tax deductions and credits to get their maximum refund, and I will always share thoughts and updates with visitors and customers to ensure that everyone is in the loop too.
Delay for implementation of $600 reporting threshold for third-party payment platforms’ Forms 1099-K
The IRS has announced a delay in reporting thresholds for third-party settlement organizations set to take effect for the upcoming tax filing season. As a result of this delay, third-party settlement organizations will not be required to report tax year 2022 transactions on a Form 1099-K to the IRS or the payee for the lower, $600 threshold amount enacted as part of the American Rescue Plan of 2021. The IRS also has released guidance outlining that calendar year 2022 will be a transition period for implementation of the lowered threshold reporting for third-party settlement organizations (TPSOs) that would have generated Form 1099-Ks for taxpayers.
Where's My Refund
You may check:
24 hours after e-filing a tax year 2022 return
3 or 4 days after e-filing a tax year 2020 or 2021 return
If you filed on paper, it could take 6 months or more
You can check online or download the IRS2Go app. https://www.irs.gov/refunds
IRS2Go is the official mobile app of the IRS where you can check your refund status, make a payment, find free tax preparation assistance, sign up for helpful tax tips, and more! You can check your refund status within 24 hours after we receive your e-filed return, or about four (4) weeks after mailing your paper return. Download the app now through your app store on your electronic mobile device.
IRS2Go is available in both English and Spanish.
2023 Tax Filing Deadline
The due date to file your 2022 income tax return or extension form is April 18, 2023.
Tax Brackets Increase
For 2022, the tax brackets for individual income tax increased as follows:
10% tax rate: Applies to taxable income of up to $10,275 —up from $9,950
12%: More than $10,275 —up from $9,950
22%: More than $41,775 —up from $40,525
24%: More than $89,075 —up from $86,375
32%: More than $170,050 —up from $164,925
35%: More than $215,950 —up from $209,425
37%: More than $539,900 —up from $523,600
ACTC Letter 6419
What you need to know about the ACTC Letter 6419:
Helps taxpayers reconcile and receive all entitled CTC payments
The letters will begin to mail in late December and continue into January
The letter includes the total ACTC payments received in 2021 and the number of qualifying children
Use this letter to help you compare the ACTC payments received with the amount that can be properly claimed
Taxpayers can also check the amount of their payments by using the
available on the IRS website.
EIP Letter 6475
What you need to know about EIP Payment #3, Letter 6475:
It only applies to taxpayers that received the third round of EIP
Third round of Economic Impact Payments started in March 2021 and continued through December 2021
Use the letter to help determine if EIP 3 recipients are entitled to or should claim the Recovery Rebate Credit on tax year 2021 tax returns that will be filed in 2022
Letter mailing will begin in late January
Deferred Social Security Payments
For many employers and self-employed people, deferred Social Security tax payment due Jan. 3
The Internal Revenue Service reminds employers and self-employed individuals who chose to defer paying part of their 2020 Social Security tax obligation that a payment is due Jan. 3, 2022.
Tax Witholding Estimator
Use the Tax Withholding Estimator to help you determine the right amount of tax to have withheld from your paycheck. This tool on IRS.gov will help determine if you need to adjust your withholding and submit a new Form W-4 to your employer.
Adjust withholding; Make estimated or additional tax payments
The IRS urges everyone to use the Tax Withholding Estimator to perform a paycheck or pension income checkup. This is even more important for those who received a smaller refund than expected or owed an unexpected tax bill last year.
It's also a good idea for anyone who had a key life event, such as getting married, getting divorced, having or adopting a child, retiring, buying a home or starting college.
If the Tax Withholding Estimator recommends a change, an employee can then submit a new Form W-4, Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate, to their employer. Don't send this form to the IRS.
Similarly, recipients of pension or annuity income can use the results from the estimator to complete a Form W-4P, Withholding Certificate for Pension or Annuity Payments, and give it to their payer.
Taxpayers who receive a substantial amount of non-wage income should make quarterly estimated tax payments. This can include self-employment income, investment income (including gain from the sale, exchange or other disposition of virtual currency), taxable Social Security benefits and in some instances, pension and annuity income. Making estimated tax payments can also help a wage-earner cover an unexpected withholding shortfall.
Estimated tax payments are due quarterly, with the last payment for 2019 due on Jan. 15, 2020. Form 1040-ES, Estimated Tax for Individuals, has a worksheet to help figure these payments. Payment options can be found at IRS.gov/payments.
Workers and retirees who receive self-employment income or income from the gig economy, including payments in the form of virtual currency, should make sure to take these amounts into account when they fill out the Tax Withholding Estimator. Payments received in virtual currency by independent contractors and other service providers are taxable, and self-employment tax rules generally apply. Normally, payers must issue Form 1099-MISC. Similarly, wages paid using virtual currency are taxable to the employee, subject to withholding, and must be reported by the employer on a Form W-2.
People with more complex tax situations should use the instructions in Publication 505, Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax. This includes those who owe alternative minimum tax or various other taxes, and people with long-term capital gains or qualified dividends.
Determine Tax Filing Status
HOW TO DETERMINE YOUR TAX FILING STATUS
There are five basic tax filing statuses:
Married filing jointly (MFJ):
This is generally the most beneficial filing status, since it offers lower tax brackets and a higher standard deduction. You’re eligible if you’re married as of December 31 of the tax year.
Married filing separately (MFS):
This will usually result in higher tax liability. But, there are times when it makes sense. This can happen when one partner is self-employed and makes much less money than the other. It can also make sense if one partner has a much higher level of deductible itemized expenses. You may also want to file separately if you lived apart during the year.
Head of Household (HOH):
You can claim this status when you are a single taxpayer, legally separated, or when your spouse didn’t live with you during the second half of the tax year. But, here is the determining factor:
you must have a qualifying child or dependent for which you paid at least half of their support.
You don’t qualify for this status if you are otherwise married, or your spouse spent even one night in the same residence as you. You may need to provide specific documentation to prove the status (separation agreement, evidence of separate residences, documentation that you provided more than half of the dependence support).
This is your tax status if you are not married – or legally separated – as of December 31 of the tax year.
You must have a qualifying dependent to be eligible for the status. It enables you to have the same tax benefits as if you are married filing jointly. You are only eligible for this status in the year in which your spouse died, and the following year.
Gather documents and organize tax records
The IRS urges all taxpayers to develop a recordkeeping system − electronic or paper − that keeps important information in one place. Keep copies of filed tax returns and all supporting documents for at least three years.
This includes year-end Forms W-2 from employers, Forms 1099 from banks and other payers, other income documents, records documenting all virtual currency transactions, and Forms 1095-A for those claiming the Premium Tax Credit. Add tax records to the files as they are received. Having complete and timely records can help any taxpayer file a complete and accurate return.
Taxpayers should confirm that each employer, bank or other payer has a current mailing address or email address. Typically, year-end forms start arriving by mail – or are available online – in January. Review them carefully and, if any of the information shown is inaccurate, contact the payer right away for a correction.
To avoid refund delays, be sure to gather all year-end income documents before filing a return. Filing too early, before receiving a key document, often means a taxpayer must file an amended return to report additional income or claim a refund. It can take up to 16 weeks to get an amended return refund.
Anyone using a software product for the first time may need the Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) amount shown on their previous years return to file their current tax return electronically. Consult the taxpayer's copy of last year's return, or alternatively, visit the View Your Tax Account link on IRS.gov. Learn more about verifying identity and electronically signing a return at Validating Your Electronically Filed Tax Return.
Electronic Filing and Direct Deposit
Filing electronically is easy, safe and the most accurate way to file taxes. There are a variety of free electronic filing options for most taxpayers including using IRS Free File for taxpayers with income below $66,000, or Fillable Forms for taxpayers who earn more. Taxpayers who generally earn $56,000 or less can have their return prepared at a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance site. Tax Counseling for the Elderly sites offer free tax help for all taxpayers, particularly those who are 60 years of age and older.
Combining Direct Deposit with electronic filing is the fastest way to get a refund. With Direct Deposit, a refund goes directly into the taxpayer's bank account. No need to worry about a lost, stolen or undeliverable refund check. This is the same electronic transfer system used to deposit nearly 98% of all Social Security and Veterans Affairs benefits. Nearly four out of five federal tax refunds are deposited directly.
Direct Deposit is easy to use. Taxpayers select it as their refund method through tax software or let their tax preparer know they want direct deposit. Taxpayers can even choose Direct Deposit on a paper return. Be sure to have bank account and routing numbers handy and double check entries to avoid errors.
Direct Deposit also saves taxpayer dollars. It costs the nation's taxpayers more than $1 for every paper refund check issued but only a dime for each Direct Deposit.
By law, the IRS cannot issue refunds for people claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) before mid-February. The law requires the IRS to hold the entire refund − even the portion not associated with EITC or ACTC. This law change, which took effect in 2017, helps ensure that taxpayers receive the refund they're due by giving the IRS more time to detect and prevent fraud.
The IRS cautions taxpayers not to rely on receiving a refund by a certain date, especially when making major purchases or paying bills. Some returns may require additional review and may take longer. For example, the IRS, along with its partners in the tax industry, continue to strengthen security reviews to help protect against identity theft and refund fraud.
Consumer Alerts on Tax Scams
Note that the IRS will never:
Call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. Generally, the IRS will first mail you a bill if you owe any taxes.
Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
For more information on tax scams, please see Tax Scams/Consumer Alerts on the IRS website. For more information on phishing scams, please see Suspicious emails and Identity Theft on the IRS website.
Is it Really the IRS Calling?
The IRS wants you to understand how and when we contact taxpayers and help you determine whether a contact you may have received is truly from an IRS employee.
The IRS initiates most contacts through regular mail delivered by the United States Postal Service.
However, there are special circumstances in which the IRS will call or come to a home or business, such as when a taxpayer has an overdue tax bill, to secure a delinquent tax return or a delinquent employment tax payment, or to tour a business as part of an audit or during criminal investigations.
See Avoid scams: Know the facts on how the IRS contacts taxpayers for more information on the IRS website.
The standard deduction for married filing jointly rises to $24,800 for tax year 2020, up $400 from the prior year. For single taxpayers and married individuals filing separately, the standard deduction rises to $12,400 in for 2020, up $200, and for heads of households, the standard deduction will be $18,650 for tax year 2020, up $300.
For 2020, as in 2019 and 2018, there is no limitation on itemized deductions, as that limitation was eliminated by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
The personal exemption for tax year 2020 remains at 0, as it was for 2019, this elimination of the personal exemption was a provision in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
2020 Tax Refund Release Estimates
IRS Accepts E-Filed Return By....Direct Deposit Sent (Or Paper Check Mailed 1 week later):
Jan. 25, 2021......Feb. 5, 2021 (Feb. 12, 2021)*
Feb. 2...Feb. 12 (Feb 19)*
Feb. 8...Feb. 19 (Feb 26)*
Feb. 16...Feb. 26 (Mar. 5)*
Feb. 22...Mar. 5 (Mar 12)
Mar. 1...Mar. 12 (Mar. 19)
Mar. 8...Mar. 19 (Mar. 26)
Mar. 15...Mar. 26 (Apr. 2)
Mar. 22...Apr. 2 (Apr. 9)**
* = Returns with EITC or CTC may have refunds delayed until late February to verify credits.
** = Filing during peak season can result in slightly longer waits.
IRS Accepts Return By...Direct Deposit Sent (Or Paper Check Mailed one week later)
Mar. 29, 2021...Apr. 9, 2021 (Apr. 16)**
Apr. 5...Apr. 16 (Apr. 23)**
Apr. 12...Apr. 23 (Apr. 30)**
Apr. 19...Apr. 30 (May 7)
Apr. 26...May 7 (May 14)
May 3...May 14 (May 21)
May 10..May 21 (May 28)
May 17...May 28 (June 4)
May 24...June 4 (June 11)
IMPORTANT: If you file electronically (using an online tax program or preparer), the IRS will notify you of the actual date they "accepted" your return. This is often 1-3 days from the time you actually hit the "file" or "submit" button, and it is this date that you need to use for the above chart.
Taxpayers who mail a paper version of their income tax return can expect at least a 3-4 week delay at the front-end of the process, as the return has to be manually entered into the IRS system before it can be processed.
In general, the IRS says that returns with refunds are processed and payments issued within 21 days. For paper filers, this can take much longer, however. The IRS and tax professionals strongly encourage electronic filing.payments issued within 21 days. For paper filers, this can take much longer, however.
The standard deduction amounts will increase to $12,200 for individuals, $18,350 for heads of household, and $24,400 for married couples filing jointly and surviving spouses. For 2019, the additional standard deduction amount for the aged or the blind is $1,300.
2019 Income Filing Limits and Additional Filing Requirements
You are required to file if your income exceeds the following limits for 2019:
Single, under 65 – $12,200
Single, 65 or older – $13,850
Married filing jointly, both spouses under 65 – $24,400
Married filing jointly, one spouse 65 or older – $25,700
Married filing jointly, both spouses 65 or older – $27,000
Married filing separately, any age – $12,200
Head of household, under 65 – $18,350
Head of household, 65 or older – $20,000
Qualifying widow(er), under 65 – $24,400
Qualifying widow(er), 65 or older – $25,700
You will still need to file a tax return if any of the following apply:
You had at least $400 in self-employment income. This will also extend to freelancers, people with side businesses, and anyone who engages in gig work.
You owe household employment taxes.
Social Security and Medicare taxes owed on unreported tip income.
You received a distribution from a retirement plan, medical savings account (MSA) or a health savings account (HSA).
You received an advance payment on the Premium Tax Credit.
Expect to qualify for the earned income tax credit (EIC).
If you may be subject to the
You want to claim a refundable Health Coverage Tax Credit.
You had wages of $108.28 or more from a church or qualified church-controlled organization exempt from employer Social Security and Medicare tax.
2019 Tax Refund Release Estimates
The below chart shows an estimated timeline for when a taxpayer is likely to receive their refund, based on the information we have now, and using projections based on previous years. If your IRS income tax refund is delayed, ask your tax professional, or simply use the "Where's My Refund?" tool on the IRS website. Or download the IRS2Go app to check your refund status.
IRS Accepts BetweenThese Dates ==== > Direct Deposit Sent(Or Check Mailed)
1/20/20- 1/24/20--- > Friday 1/31/20 *
1/27/20- 1/31/ 20 --- > Friday 2/7/20
2/3/20- 2/7/20 --- > Friday 2/14/20 **
2/10/20- 2/14/20 --- > Friday 2/21/20 **
2/17/20- 2/21/20 --- > Friday 2/28/20
2/24/20- 2/28/20 --- > Friday 3/6/20
3/2/20- 3/6/20 --- > Friday 3/20/20 ***
3/9/20- 3/13/20 --- > Friday 3/27/20
3/16/20- 3/20/20 --- > Friday 4/3/20
3/23/20- 3/27/20 --- > Friday 4/10/20
* = IRS may delay tax filing season by one week or more due to changes in tax law.
** = Returns with EITC or CTC may have refunds delayed until late February to verify credits.
*** = Filing during peak season can result in slightly longer waits.
3/29/20- 4/3/20 --- > Friday 4/17/20
4/6/20- 4/10/20 --- > Friday 4/24/20
4/13/20- 4/12/20 --- > Friday 5/1/20
4/20/20- 4/24/20 --- > Friday 5/8/20
4/27/20- 5/1/20 --- > Friday 5/15/20
5/4/20- 5/8/20 --- > Friday 5/22/20
5/11/20- 5/15/20 --- > Friday 5/29/20
5/18/20- 5/22/20 --- > Friday 6/5/20
5/25/20- 5/29/20 --- > Friday 6/12/20
6/1/20- 6/5/20 --- > Friday 6/19/20
2019 Tax Refund
The income tax season generally starts in late January, when the IRS officially starts accepting e-filed and mailed-in tax returns. However, in recent years, the start of tax season has been delayed until early February, due mostly to significant changes to the tax laws. Keep that in mind this year, since if Congress makes new tax laws in December, it will likely cause a delay at the IRS.
The IRS is also continuing to delay processing by 2-3 weeks of income tax returns with the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or Child Tax Credit (CTC), since these credits have often been the focus of misuse and abuse.
The IRS will start processing most returns on January 20, 2020, but will not start processing returns with the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) until mid-February 2020.
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