Falls Credit N Tax is able to prepare taxes for personal and business customers in the following states (AL, AK, AZ, AR, CA, CZ, FL, GA, HI, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MA, MI, MN, NV, NM, NY, NC, ND, OK, PA, PR, RI, SC, SD, TX, VA, WA, WI, WY).
Schedule an Appointment:
The sooner you meet with your preparer, the sooner you should be able to complete your return—even if you decide to file for an extension. If you anticipate a refund, you’ll get that sooner, too.
If you wait too long to schedule an appointment with a tax preparer, it might not happen before the filing deadline. That means you could miss out on opportunities to lower your tax bills, such as making a deductible contribution to an individual retirement account (IRA) or a health savings account (HSA)
Prepare your Documents:
You should receive all the tax documents you need from your employer or employers as well as from banks, brokerage firms, and others with whom you do business by the end of January.9
These are some of the most common forms:
- Form W-2 if you had a job working for someone else.
- The various 1099 forms that report other income you received, such as dividends (Form 1099-DIV), interest (Form 1099-INT), and nonemployee compensation paid to independent contractors (Form 1099-MISC).111213 Brokers aren’t required to mail Form 1099-B, which reports gains and losses on securities transactions, until mid-February, so those may come a little later.
- Form 1098 for reporting any mortgage interest you paid.
- Form W-2G if you had certain gambling winnings.
Gather your receipts:
Make sure you look for receipts for medical costs not covered by insurance or reimbursed by any other health plan (such as a flexible spending account (FSA) or an HSA), property taxes, and investment-related expenses. These are all subject to limits, but if they’re substantial enough, it may be worth your while to itemize. The receipts you’ll need to provide depend on whether you itemize your deductions or claim the standard deduction. You’ll want to choose whichever produces the bigger write-off, but the only way to know for sure is to add up your itemized deductions and compare the result with your standard deduction. For the 2022 tax year, the standard deduction for single taxpayers is $12,950; for married couples filing jointly, it is $25,900. Those figures increase in 2023 to $13,850 for singles and $27,700 for married couples filing jointly.
If you itemize your deductions, you’ll also need to collect any backup you have for charitable contributions. For example, donations of $250 or more require a written acknowledgment from the charity stating the amount of your gift and that you did not receive anything (other than perhaps a token item) in return. If you don’t have such an acknowledgment, contact the charity and request it. You can find more details on charitable deductions in IRS Publication 1771.
Gather all Personal Information:
You probably know your Social Security number (SSN), but do you know the Social Security number of each dependent you claim? You’ll want to jot those down (in a safe place, of course), along with any other information your tax preparer is likely to need. If you own a vacation home or rental property, for example, note the addresses. If you sold a property in the past year, note the dates you bought and sold it, the amount you originally paid for it, and how much you received from the sale.
Filing an Extension:
If you need more time to complete all of these tasks, you can request an extension to October 15th for filing your tax return. However, you’ll still have to estimate the amount of tax you owe and pay that amount by the regular April deadline to avoid penalties and interest.
A Copy of Last Year’s Return:
If you use the same preparer you used last year, they will likely have your previous information. If you use a new preparer, last year’s return can serve as a reminder to the preparer—and you—of some items you don’t want to overlook.