Tax Planning

2014 Tax Brackets

Posted by TaxGuy on September 23, 2013
Income Tax, IRS, Tax Code Changes, Tax Exemptions, Tax Planning, Tax Refund / No Comments

2014 Tax Brackets, Exemption Amounts Likely To Save Tax Dollars

Inflation often makes consumers worry. Nobody wants prices to go up – and that tends to be our gut reaction when we hear about inflation. But sometimes, a little inflation can be a good thing (no, I’m not channeling Janet Yellen).

When it comes to taxes, the Tax Code provides for mandatory annual adjustments to certain tax items based on inflation. And, according to CCH, part of Wolters Kluwer and a leading global provider of tax, accounting and audit information, software and services, that’s going to result in savings – albeit modest – for most taxpayers. George Jones, a Senior Federal Tax Analyst at CCH, explains:

Most taxpayers benefit from inflation adjustments since the adjustments tend to preserve the value of most, but not all, of the dollar-based benefits under the Tax Code year after year.

Of those tax items subject to mandatory annual adjustments, federal income tax brackets tend to get the most attention. They have been subject to adjustment for nearly 30 years. However, it certainly didn’t stop there: inflation adjustments are now routinely included in new tax legislation. Which tax items are subject to adjustment – and how much – can be confusing for taxpayers. Luckily, there are tax professionals out there who can sort it all out for you.

Leading the pack, this week, Wolters Kluwer, CCH released estimates for the 2014 tax brackets and other tax items affected by inflation, such as the personal exemption and the standard deduction. Their predictions indicate that most taxpayers will end up with a few more dollars in their pockets.

With respect to the adjusted tax rates, here’s how the savings might shake out: a married couple filing jointly with a total taxable income of $100,000 should pay $145 less income taxes in 2014 than in 2013 and a single filer with taxable income of $50,000 should owe $72.50 less next year.

Estimated 2014 Tax Brackets, Courtesy of Wolters Kluwer, CCH

It gets better. Standard deduction and personal exemption amounts will be slightly higher in 2014, as will income ceilings for tax benefits such as education credits, individual retirement account (IRA) contributions and more.

The standard deduction for single taxpayers, heads of households and married couples filing jointly will all show increases for 2014, by $100, $150 and $200, respectively. The standard deduction for joint filers, for example, would rise from $12,200 to $12,400 in 2014. What this means for taxpayers is lower taxes: increases in the standard deduction decrease taxable income which means lower taxes.

The additional standard deduction for those age 65 or older or who are blind will stay at $1,200 level for 2014 for married individuals and surviving spouses but will increase to $1,550 for single aged 65 or older or blind filers.

2014 Standard Deduction Estimates, courtesy of Wolters Kluwer, CCH

The personal exemption amount gets bumped up by inflation by $50, to $3,950 in 2014 after having increased $100 between 2012 and 2013. The personal exemption phaseout (PEP) still applies: the 2014 phase out range for personal exemptions begins at $305,050 for joint filers and $254,200 for single filers. The same income ranges apply to the phase-out of itemized deductions; those limitations are called Pease limitations, named after former Rep. Don Pease (D-OH).

The PEP and Pease limits were slated to be reduced beginning in 2006 and eliminated in 2010; as with the other tax cuts, the elimination was extended through the end of 2012. The limitations were brought back in 2013 at the original thresholds, indexed for inflation. The result of those changes is basically an increase in the top marginal tax rates.

And it’s not just income tax that will see changes: the federal gift tax annual exclusion – how much a donor can gift to any number of persons in one year without being subject to federal gift tax – will remain at $14,000. In contrast, the estate and gift tax applicable exemption – the amount that you can give away during your lifetime or bequest at your death without being subject to federal estate tax – will rise from $5,250,000 in 2013 to $5,340,000 for 2014. With the new portability provisions, the federal estate-tax exclusion can be shared between a husband and wife, making the total that can pass with no federal estate and gift tax payable effectively $10,680,000 for 2014.

And this year, there’s a new kid in town when it comes to inflation: the alternative minimum tax (AMT). In years past, the AMT was subject to a last minute scramble by Congress to “patch” the exemption. This year, things are different. As part of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA), signed into law on January 2, 2013, the AMT will be permanently adjusted for inflation. This was such a big deal that, when I reported it in January, I put it in red. Before this year, Congress hadn’t touched the AMT, other than to patch it, in more than 40 years.

For 2014, Wolters Kluwer, CCH projects that the AMT exemption for married joint filers and surviving spouses will be adjusted upward to $82,100, up from $80,800 in 2013. For unmarried single filers, the 2014 exemption will be $52,800, up from $51,900 in 2013; and for heads of household, the exemption will increase to $52,800, up from $51,900 in 2013.

Not all tax items will be affected. “Rounding conventions” will keep some tax item for 2014 the same as in 2013. This includes the $5,500 limit on IRA contributions. Also staying put? The amount of unearned income a child can take home without paying tax remains at $1,000: after that, kids are subject to the kiddie tax.

Wolters Kluwer, CCH’s projections are based on the data released by the Department of Labor on September 17, 2013, by the U.S. Department of Labor. Most adjustments are based on Consumer Price Index for September through August prior to the adjusted year; some inflation-adjusted figures are computed at other times.

The IRS usually releases official numbers by December each year; sometimes, it’s as late as January. You can see the 2013 numbers here. It’s worth noting that these Wolters Kluwer, CCH tax bracket projections are for illustrative purposes only and should not be used for income tax returns or other federal income tax related purposes until confirmed by the IRS.

2014 IRS Refund Cycle Chart for 2013 Tax Year

2014 IRS Refund Cycle Chart and e-file payment information.

This is a schedule for 2014 IRS Refund Cycle Chart. Direct Deposit and Check date’s below. Please see disclaimer. 2014 tax refund schedule is listed below for information purposes. This is just for the first week. Find out when you’re state income tax refund will be in. Please consider donating $1 to $5 to us for help with cost of running the site. Thank you.

2014 IRS E-File Cycle ChartPlease note that due to heavy volumes on the opening week of tax season, several direct deposits may be pushed to the second week of payouts. 

IRS approves your return (by 11:00 am) between…* Projected Direct Deposit Sent on or before* Projected Paper Check Mailed*
January 24 and January 31 2014 2/6/2014 & 2/10/2014 2/7/2014 Continue reading…

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Late filing your 2012 Income Tax Return

Late filing your 2012 Income Tax Return? 

If you’re getting an income tax refund, no need to panic. You don’t even need to file an extension.

2012 tax returns that are due a refund have until April 15, 2016 (October 15, 2016 with an extension) to be filed with the IRS before the statute of limitations on the refund runs out. If you don’t file by then, the U.S. Treasury simply keeps your “donation.”

However, if you owe additional tax, file your return as soon as you can, even if you can’t pay your tax bill right away.

The penalties for not filing are much higher than the penalties for not paying, and the longer you wait, the worse it gets. See the What are the penalties for filing late? section below.

Can I e-file after the April 15 deadline?

Filing Income Tax Return LateYes, you can e-file your 2012 tax return through October 15, 2013. After that, the IRS shuts down e-filing to get ready for the following tax year, and you will need to file a conventional paper return.

Click here for tax year 2012 filing deadlines.

What are the penalties for filing late?

It all depends.

  • There is no penalty if you’re getting a refund, provided you file within the allotted 3-year timeframe.
    • After 3 years, the “penalty” is forfeiture of your tax refund, as mentioned above.
  • There is no penalty if you filed an extension and paid any additional taxes owed by April 15, as long as you file your return by the October 15 deadline.
  • late filing penalty applies if you owe taxes and didn’t file your return or extension by April 15.
    • This penalty also applies if you owe taxes, filed an extension, but didn’t file your return by October 15.
    • The late filing penalty is 5% of the additional taxes owed amount for every month (or fraction thereof) your return is late, up to a maximum of 25%.
    • Tip: The late filing penalty is 10 times higher than the late payment penalty. If you can’t pay your tax bill and didn’t file an extension, at least file your return as soon as possible! You can always amend it later.
  • late payment penalty applies if you didn’t pay additional taxes owed by April 15, whether you filed an extension or not.
    • The late payment penalty is 0.5% (1/2 of 1 percent) of the additional tax owed amount for every month (or fraction thereof) the owed tax remains unpaid, up to a maximum of 25%.

Example: Let’s say you didn’t file your return or extension by April 15, and you still owe the IRS an additional $1,000.

Best-case scenario: You file your return on April 29, 2 weeks late, and submit your payment for $1,000. You would owe an additional $50 for filing late ($1,000 x .05) plus another $5 for late payment ($1,000 x .005) for a total penalty of $55.

(Had you filed your extension by the deadline, your total penalty would only be $5. It pays to file an extension!)

Worst-case scenario: You file your 2012 return in April of 2018, 5 years late, and submit your payment for $1,000. You would owe an additional $250 for filing late ($1,000 x the maximum .25) plus another $250 for late payment ($1,000 x the maximum .25), for a total penalty of $500.

What happens if I do not file, period?

You’ll probably receive a letter from the IRS reminding you to file your tax return, particularly if W-2 or 1099 forms were reported to the IRS by your employers. For additional information, refer to the IRS article What Will Happen If You Don’t File Your Past Due Return or Contact The IRS.

If you are due a refund, you’ll forfeit your refund if you do not file by April 15, 2016 (or October 15 of 2016 if you filed an extension).

Self-Employed?

You must file returns reporting your self-employment income within three years of the original filing deadline in order to receive Social Security credits toward your retirement. Don’t lose your Social Security benefits by not filing!

Are there any situations which allow me to file late?

Filing late return with IRSyou are out of the country on the April filing deadline, you are allowed two extra months (June 17, 2013) to file your return and pay the amount due, without needing to request an extension.

You’re considered out of the country if:

  • You live outside of the United States or Puerto Rico and your main place of work is outside of the United States or Puerto Rico; or
  • You are in military or naval service outside of the United States or Puerto Rico.

If you still need more time after the automatic June 17 deadline, you can request four additional months by filing an extension along with paying any taxes you owe.

Other Special Situations

  • Residents of Suffolk County, Massachusetts have until July 15, 2013 to file their 2012 returns and pay taxes due. More info
  • Taxpayers living in the Midwest or South who were unable to file their 2012 returns on time because of severe weather around the April 15 deadline may qualify for late filing without penalty. More info

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2009 IRS Income Tax Refund filing deadline April 15th 2013

The deadline for filing your 2009 Income Tax Refund is steadily approaching.

The IRS deadline for claiming 2009 Income Tax refund checks is April 15th, 2013. You will need to paper file your return by April 15th to claim your 2009 refund checks. This is for federal income tax refunds only.

2009 Income Tax Refund

“Refunds totaling just over $917 million may be waiting for an estimated 984,400 taxpayers who did not file a federal income tax return for 2009, the Internal Revenue Service announced today. However, to collect the money, a return for 2009 must be filed with the IRS no later than Monday, April 15, 2013.”

“By failing to file a return, people stand to lose more than refund of taxes withheld or paid during 2009. In addition, many low-and-moderate income workers may not have claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). For 2009, the credit is worth as much as $5,657. The EITC helps individuals and families whose incomes are below certain thresholds.”

More details available at the IRS website. If you need assistance filing your 2009 Income Tax Return, contact Hot Springs Tax Services for help.

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When should you file 2012 Income Tax Return?

Posted by TaxGuy on March 06, 2013
Income Tax, Income Tax Preparation, Tax Planning, Tax Refund / No Comments

 When should you file your 2012 Income Tax Return?

2012 Income Tax Return

The tax law sets deadlines for filing 2012 income tax returns. However, there is room to maneuver, and the time you choose to file depends on your personal situation. Here are some guidelines to help you decide on the best time for you to file your return.

File early


The filing season for 2012 income tax returns officially opened in end of January 2013 when the IRS began to accept electronically-filed returns. Most individuals do not file before the beginning of February in order to receive information returns, such as W-2s and 1099s, which are usually sent to taxpayers at the end of January; this information is needed to complete the return. Continue reading…

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2013 IRS Refund Schedule for Tax Year 2012

Posted by TaxGuy on February 14, 2013
Income Tax, refund schedules, Tax Law, Tax Planning, Tax Refund / 25 Comments

IRS Refund Schedule 2013 – 2012 IRS Refund Payment Schedule

2012 IRS e-file Cycle Chart and Payment Information.

Direct Deposit and Check date’s below. Please see disclaimer.

All IRS Refund’s filed in 2014 should be paid out in order of the 2014 Tax Refund Cycle Chart.


Continue reading…

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Income Tax Refund Calendar 2012

2012 IRS e-file cycle chart and payment information.

Direct Deposit and Check date’s below. Please see disclaimer.

 

IRS accepts your return (by 11:00 am) between…* Projected Direct Deposit Sent* Projected Paper Check Mailed*
January 30, 2013
2/6/2013
2/8/2013
January 31
and
February 6, 2013
2/13/2013
2/15/2013
February 9
and
February 13, 2013
2/20/2013
2/22/2013
February 16
and
February 20, 2013
2/27/2013
3/1/2013
February 23
and
February 27, 2013
3/6/2013
3/8/2013
March 1
and
March 6, 2013
3/13/2013
3/15/2013
March 8
and
March 13, 2013
3/20/2013
3/22/2013
March 15
and
March 20, 2013
3/27/2013
3/29/2013
March 22
and
March 27, 2013
4/3/2013
4/5/2013
March 29
and
April 3, 2013
4/10/2013
4/12/2013
April 5
and
April 10, 2013
4/17/2013
4/19/2013
April 12
and
April 17, 2013
4/24/2013
4/26/2013
April 19
and
April 24, 2013
5/1/2013
5/3/2013
April 26
and
May 1, 2013
5/8/2013
5/10/2013
May 3
and
May 8, 2013
5/15/2013
5/17/2013
May 10
and
May 15, 2013
5/22/2013
5/24/2013
May 17
and
May 22, 2013
5/29/2013
5/31/2013
May 24
and
May 29, 2013
6/5/2013
6/7/2013
May 31
and
June 5, 2013
6/12/2013
6/14/2013 Continue reading…

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File your 2012 Income Tax Return now!

Posted by TaxGuy on January 25, 2013
Income Tax, Tax Planning, Tax Refund / No Comments

E-File your 2012 Income Tax today to get your refund back early!

Hot Springs Tax Services. Low Cost Income Tax Preparation with No Upfront Cost to you.

The I.R.S will begin processing returns this Wednesday. File now to get your return back by as early as February 7th!

We offer low-cost tax preparation and e-file services to you. File your taxes with us and get the guaranteed maximum federal and state return today.

 

Have a real accountant look over your taxes and help you make important financial decisions.

Contact us today to setup an appointment.

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Late Start for I.R.S. 2012 Income Tax Processing

Posted by TaxGuy on January 10, 2013
Income Tax, Personal Finances, Tax Law, Tax Planning, Tax Refund / No Comments

Bad news coming out of the IRS today. The IRS will not start processing 2012 Income Tax Returns until January 30th, 2013.

Here is the article from the IRS:

IRS Plans Jan. 30 Tax Season Opening For 1040 Filers

IR-2013-2, Jan. 8, 2013

WASHINGTON — Following the January tax law changes made by Congress under the American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA), the Internal Revenue Service announced today it plans to open the 2013 filing season and begin processing individual income tax returns on Jan. 30.

The IRS will begin accepting tax returns on that date after updating forms and completing programming and testing of its processing systems. This will reflect the bulk of the late tax law changes enacted Jan. 2. The announcement means that the vast majority of tax filers — more than 120 million households — should be able to start filing tax returns starting Jan 30.

The IRS estimates that remaining households will be able to start filing in late February or into March because of the need for more extensive form and processing systems changes. This group includes people claiming residential energy credits, depreciation of property or general business credits. Most of those in this group file more complex tax returns and typically file closer to the April 15 deadline or obtain an extension.

“We have worked hard to open tax season as soon as possible,” IRS Acting Commissioner Steven T. Miller said. “This date ensures we have the time we need to update and test our processing systems.”

The IRS will not process paper tax returns before the anticipated Jan. 30 opening date. There is no advantage to filing on paper before the opening date, and taxpayers will receive their tax refunds much faster by using e-file with direct deposit.

“The best option for taxpayers is to file electronically,” Miller said.

The opening of the filing season follows passage by Congress of an extensive set of tax changes in ATRA on Jan. 1, 2013, with many affecting tax returns for 2012. While the IRS worked to anticipate the late tax law changes as much as possible, the final law required that the IRS update forms and instructions as well as make critical processing system adjustments before it can begin accepting tax returns.

The IRS originally planned to open electronic filing this year on Jan. 22; more than 80 percent of taxpayers filed electronically last year.

Who Can File Starting Jan. 30?

The IRS anticipates that the vast majority of all taxpayers can file starting Jan. 30, regardless of whether they file electronically or on paper. The IRS will be able to accept tax returns affected by the late Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) patch as well as the three major “extender” provisions for people claiming the state and local sales tax deduction, higher education tuition and fees deduction and educator expenses deduction.

Continue reading…

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Individual 1040(ez) Tax Preparation

Posted by TaxGuy on December 27, 2012
Tax Planning, Tax Refund / 1 Comment

Also, a small note, If you have a copy of your prior year .tax return and your final pay stub from work. We can file starting January 3rd for you at no initial charge. Your payment will be paid out of your tax refund. Not have a bank account? No problem. We can have a check mailed or get the same card for you that you would get through a tax company. Contact us today for an appointment.

 

Taxes@HotSpringsTaxServices.com

(501) 216-0587