I dread tax time, and goodness knows I am not the one.
Fortunately, there is a shred of good news this year, especially for procrastinating parents, since the deadline for tax submission is extended by three days.
Traditionally, Tax Day falls on April 15 unless that day happens to be on a Saturday, Sunday or federal holiday. In 2011, the folks in Washington, D.C. will celebrate Emancipation Day on April 15, a day earlier than normal, since April 16 falls on a Saturday. As such, Tax Day is being moved to April 18, giving moms and dads more time to figure out their child tax credit.
If you don’t think you will be able to crunch all the numbers by next week, then you have the option of filing an extension.
Love the extension offer.
If you are a busy parent, don’t feel bad about exercising it. According to FileLater.com, in 2007, nearly 9.5 million personal extensions were filed. In 2009 that number jumped to more than 10.5 million. Clearly, more people are putting off the pain of sorting through personal financial records to see how much they have to pay Uncle Sam.
If you own your own business and are having trouble wading through your paperwork, you would not be alone in filing an extension. Sources show that more than 5.5 million business owners annually file for tax extensions.
The IRS does impose fees on people who owe money, but file extensions because they can’t get their stuff together in time to meet the April 18th deadline. In most cases you will have to pay interest on the money owed and possibly face additional fees if you falsify documents in order to reduce the amount of taxes you owe.
Of course, no one wants to think about that scenario.
If you don’t think you can accurately figure out who gets what or you are struggling to navigate your way through the maze of paperwork that comes with tax time, then consider hiring an accountant. Only find a legitimate one or you will likely be forced to shell out even more cash, if the self-proclaimed number whiz fails to come through in the end.