March Madness!

March Madness!

You may have read the title of this post and thought about your NCAA bracket and the exciting basketball to come, but there is more to March than a thrilling NCAA basketball tournament. Today is the deadline for business returns, so if you own a business and haven’t filed your business return yet, you should probably race to your accountant and extend. In addition, we are about a month away from April 17th, when individual and trust returns are due. While some have already filed, many still need to do so. If you happen to be one of the many who haven’t filed yet, don’t despair, there is still time. Here are a few tips to help in your mad dash to the finish line.

  1. If you currently have a tax advisor, you probably (or should) have a tax organizer. Use this tool as a guide to what documents you need to collect. This can be invaluable when trying to remember all of the 1099s you should have.
  2. Get organized and get your tax information to your advisor as soon as possible. Tax advisors are extremely busy preparing returns and following up with clients. The longer lead time you give them, the more likely they will be to get the return filed without an extension.
  3. You can still make contributions to your IRAs, Roth IRAs, etc. for 2017. Talk to your tax advisor and financial advisor about the benefits of this and whether it may be right for you.
  4. Remember to ask your advisor about any possible taxable events or deductions you can take advantage of. Did you buy or sell a house? Did you have some large medical expenses? Did you drive your vehicle for work? These are all questions that are usually (or should be) asked by your advisor either directly or through a tax questionnaire.
  5. Don’t send your information to your advisor using an unsecured form of medium. You can deliver your information personally, via mail, encrypted email, or many other secure methods. At Elias Strauss CPAs, we send an encrypted email that our clients can attach documents to and reply back. There are many safe ways to send information.

If you have not filed yet, you are not alone. Follow these tips and talk to your advisor throughout the year. You should develop a plan with your advisor, so that you have an idea about what’s to come. Whether it is planning for the first estimated tax payment due in April, or taxes owed, or refunds to come. Taxes don’t have to be stressful, so talk to your advisor and get back to watching your bracket. If you currently don’t have advisor, or are exploring the idea, please reach out and we would be happy to talk.

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