The most wonderful time of the year means the least favorite time of the year is approaching: Tax time.
There are some things taxpayers can do now to help alleviate individual tax burdens in April, certified public account Lance Weiss of SFW Partners LLC told “St. Louis on the Air” host Don Marsh on Tuesday.
“Let’s make sure you’ve maxed out the 401(k) contributions. Let’s be sure you’ve taken advantage of any IRA deduction you can take,” Weiss said. “Even if you’re in a 401(k) plan through your employer, many people can also still make a regular deductible contribution to an IRA. It’s never bad to have more than one retirement savings account.”
Although taxes cannot yet be filed, Weiss said it is possible for individuals to file their own taxes.
“There are some real good tax programs out there,” he said.
The U.S. House has temporary tax breaks, known as an extender package, which is now waiting for a vote in the Senate. The Internal Revenue Service cannot adjust software until the bill is resolved, and has not announced when the filing season can begin. Weiss said he would not be surprised if it wasn’t until mid-February. But no matter when that season begins, taxes are due April 15.
“If you have that tax return with more than a couple rental properties and a couple of kids with the college credits, it’s a good idea either to take your time, really double-check all those yourself, or maybe at that point go ahead and hire a professional.”
No matter who prepares the tax return, document everything, Weiss said. “Documentation lets you survive an audit.”
“St. Louis on the Air” discusses issues and concerns facing the St. Louis area. The show is produced by Mary Edwards and Alex Heuer and hosted by veteran journalist Don Marsh. Follow us on Twitter: @STLonAir.