Financial Cents

Don’t pay more in taxes than you have to. Take full advantage of all deductions and credits available. Planning is the key to successfully and legally reducing your tax liability. The author, Juanita Farmer, is the Managing Partner of J.D. Farmer & Associates, LLC, a public accounting firm, located in Germantown.

Rely on this blog for tips and strategies to survive tax season.

 

Partner Blog for Financial Cents

Late Filing and Late Payment Penalties

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April 17 is the deadline for most people to file their federal income tax return and pay any taxes they owe. The bad news is that if you miss the deadline (for whatever reason) you may be assessed penalties for both failing to file a tax return and for failing to pay taxes you owe […]

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Need to File an Extension? Don't Wait

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If you’ve been procrastinating when it comes to preparing and filing your tax return this year you might be considering filing an extension. While obtaining a 6-month extension to file is relatively easy–and there are legitimate reasons for doing so–there are also some downsides. If you need more time to file your tax return this […]

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Understanding Estimated Tax Payments

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Estimated tax is the method used to pay tax on income that is not subject to withholding. This includes income from self-employment, interest, dividends, and rent, as well as gains from the sale of assets, prizes and awards. You also may have to pay estimated tax if the amount of income tax being withheld from […]

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IRS Scam Alert: Erroneous Refunds & Fake Calls

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Taxpayers should be aware of a new twist on an old scam involving erroneous tax refunds that are being deposited into their bank accounts. After stealing client data and filing fraudulent tax returns, these criminals use the taxpayers’ real bank accounts to deposit refunds, then use various tactics to reclaim the refund from the taxpayers. […]

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What Income is Taxable?

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Are you wondering if there’s a hard and fast rule about what income is taxable and what income is not taxable? The quick answer is that all income is taxable unless the law specifically excludes it. But as you might have guessed, there’s more to it than that. Taxable income includes any money you receive, […]

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Revised Form W-4: Check your Withholding

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The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act made changes to the tax law, including increasing the standard deduction, removing personal exemptions, increasing the child tax credit, limiting or discontinuing certain deductions and changing the tax rates and brackets. As such, a new version of Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate, was released on February 28. Taxpayers with […]

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April 1 Deadline for Retirement Plan Distributions

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In most cases, taxpayers who turned 70 1/2 during 2017 must start receiving required minimum distributions (RMDs) from Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and workplace retirement plans by Sunday, April 1, 2018. The April 1 deadline applies to owners of traditional (including SEP and SIMPLE) IRAs but not Roth IRAs. Normally, it also applies to participants […]

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Tax Filing Season Begins; Tax Returns due April 17

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More than 155 million individual tax returns are expected to be filed in 2018, according to the IRS, which began accepting electronic and paper tax returns on Monday, January 29, 2018. The January 29 opening date was set to ensure the security and readiness of key tax processing systems in advance of the opening and […]

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Five Tax Breaks that Survived Tax Reform

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Recent tax reform legislation affected many provisions in the tax code. Many were modified, either permanently or temporarily, while some were repealed entirely. Here are five that survived. 1. Mortgage Interest Deduction While the House bill repealed the mortgage interest deduction, the final version of the act retained it, albeit with modifications. First is that […]

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Owing Back Taxes could Affect Passport Renewal

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Starting in February 2018, individuals with “seriously delinquent tax debts” will be subject to a new set of provisions courtesy of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, signed into law in December 2015. The FAST Act requires the IRS to notify the State Department of taxpayers the IRS has certified as owing a seriously […]

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