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(Christian Science Monitor)   Were you planning to file your taxes early this year in hopes of an early refund? Yeah, about that   (csmonitor.com) divider line 128
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14155 clicks; posted to Main » on 09 Jan 2013 at 7:21 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-09 12:30:01 PM

JohnBigBootay: As someone who has processed a few thousand w-2's, this is a gentle suggestion to go fark yourself.

And you're right by the way - it's just a button that says 'press here to simply issue w-2 to all employees'. There's nothing that has to happen before that button can be pushed, no prep at all, and the data is already there automagically. And despite the fact the the people who are preparing the w-2's almost certainly have no other duties besides getting that button pushed, we usually wait until 1/31 out of spite.


Yea, something has to happen before the button can be pushed: The payroll software has to add up the employee's earnings for the year. So I suppose if your software can't add, you're in trouble.

Every Dec. 31, I already know what's going to be on my W2s down to the penny before they arrive. Why? Because I can add.
 
2013-01-09 12:34:56 PM

JohnBigBootay: jumac: I can never understand why it take companies 1 month to get w2 out in the 1st place. I mean how hard it is it to go into the payroll software and tell it to print out w2 for everyone on who worked there. Then stick them in the mail. But no companies gota weight to the last min to send out.

As someone who has processed a few thousand w-2's, this is a gentle suggestion to go fark yourself.

And you're right by the way - it's just a button that says 'press here to simply issue w-2 to all employees'. There's nothing that has to happen before that button can be pushed, no prep at all, and the data is already there automagically. And despite the fact the the people who are preparing the w-2's almost certainly have no other duties besides getting that button pushed, we usually wait until 1/31 out of spite.


If that button isn't there, or it requires any information that the payroll software doesn't already have, then the software is crap and should be replaced.
 
2013-01-09 12:35:55 PM
Also, who the hell are these people getting refunds? I don't think I've ever gotten a tax refund since I began working. Usually I have to fork over $3-5k extra each April. Correct your withholdings, people! You want to give uncle Sam an interest free loan?
 
2013-01-09 12:36:11 PM

JohnBigBootay: Wodan11: I don't quite understand those who want a refund. You have no self control, or what?

I have assloads of self control. I actually hit the max contribution in our 401k for the first time last year. But I still claim zero deps and get a refund every year. I have a rental property and I like to use withholding to balance the tax due on rental income. And I just generally like getting a refund. Other things I do that would drive you crazy - I often estimate what the utilities will be and pay them a week or two in advance. And before christmas and vacation I'll often pay my credit card ahead. That's right - I loan money to visa. I hate owing and that's how I deal with it.


You pay bills manually?
 
2013-01-09 12:43:20 PM

stiletto_the_wise: Also, who the hell are these people getting refunds? I don't think I've ever gotten a tax refund since I began working. Usually I have to fork over $3-5k extra each April. Correct your withholdings, people! You want to give uncle Sam an interest free loan?


Sooner or later the IRS will send you a letter that says you will now be making quarterly payments for the interest on your underpayment.

I'd prefer to not get another one of those, especially with interest rates being next to nothing.
 
2013-01-09 12:47:10 PM

Madbassist1: Thunderpipes: And don't you DARE be what the feds consider a "high earner", because then you are limited to what you contribute to retirement. So a person like me who worked hard, finally am a "high earner" am told I can only contribute 10k a year to retirement because it is not fair to others if I put, say, 15% away.

Ya know...I'm not calling you a liar or anything, but this is not the first time you have claimed to be a "high earner". Not saying you aren't, but I tend to think your definition may be different than mine, because you just don't sound like a high earner.


He doesn't sound like someone who goes to college. Maybe his degree is in basket weaving or something.
 
2013-01-09 01:03:26 PM

Gough: The Singing Bush: Thunderpipes: So a person like me who worked hard, finally am a "high earner" am told I can only contribute 10k a year to retirement because it is not fair to others if I put, say, 15% away.

Or, you know, $17M to a 401k, or $17,500 if you're over 50 in 2013. Then your wife can do the same if she's working, and if not she can contribute $5M (or $5,500 if she's over 50) to a spousal IRA. So anywhere from $22M (more than twice what you're claiming) to $35M. And then, you can even save any amount you want and ear-mark it for retirement, it just won't be pre-tax. But because you don't know what tax rates are going to be when you retire, it might be beneficial to pay the taxes now because they might currently be lower.

If you're going to make shiat up about how much you're allowed to contribute to retirement accounts, how do I know you're not making everything else up as well?

THIS.

And, speaking of fairness, is it fair that someone so clueless has become a "high earner"? Or is he just trolling?


Eh, I can believe it. It's been my experience that what you earn is only loosely correlated to merit. That six figure contract job I mentioned earlier? It was for babysitting Indian developers. I wrote short stories at my desk to relieve the boredom between taking minutes for meetings. I have never worked so little before in my life.

If life were fair, astronomers would make bank and real estate sales would be a fun hobby but no way to make a real living. Yet here we are.
 
2013-01-09 01:09:13 PM
The freak out point for many regarding taxes is when they realize their annual tax bill is now greater than the annual salary of their first real job.
 
2013-01-09 01:17:06 PM

37 is the most prime number: The freak out point for many regarding taxes is when they realize their annual tax bill is now greater than the annual salary of their first real job.


My [income] tax bill this year is a little more than my gross biweekly paycheck from my first real job, 10 years ago.

Probably less than my taxes were that year, too.

// 2 kids and a wife to deduct now.
 
2013-01-09 01:24:14 PM

MusicMakeMyHeadPound: Gough: The Singing Bush: Thunderpipes: So a person like me who worked hard, finally am a "high earner" am told I can only contribute 10k a year to retirement because it is not fair to others if I put, say, 15% away.

Or, you know, $17M to a 401k, or $17,500 if you're over 50 in 2013. Then your wife can do the same if she's working, and if not she can contribute $5M (or $5,500 if she's over 50) to a spousal IRA. So anywhere from $22M (more than twice what you're claiming) to $35M. And then, you can even save any amount you want and ear-mark it for retirement, it just won't be pre-tax. But because you don't know what tax rates are going to be when you retire, it might be beneficial to pay the taxes now because they might currently be lower.

If you're going to make shiat up about how much you're allowed to contribute to retirement accounts, how do I know you're not making everything else up as well?

THIS.

And, speaking of fairness, is it fair that someone so clueless has become a "high earner"? Or is he just trolling?

Eh, I can believe it. It's been my experience that what you earn is only loosely correlated to merit.

If life were fair, astronomers would make bank and real estate sales would be a fun hobby but no way to make a real living. Yet here we are.


That's been my real-life experience as well. Still, most of the "high earners" that I know are rabid believers in the meritocracy myth; few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery.
 
2013-01-09 01:47:23 PM

Gough: That's been my real-life experience as well. Still, most of the "high earners" that I know are rabid believers in the meritocracy myth; few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery.


That's ridiculous. I'm a white guy born in America - that's all I need to admit I won the DNA lottery.
 
2013-01-09 02:01:42 PM

Thunderpipes: Past 80k or so, things turn really, really ugly. The things you cannot claim as exemptions climb. Just making 20k more at some point makes you pay dramatically more taxes.

This is why people vote liberal. They don't make that money yet, so they don't care if other people pay.


Okay, I'll bite.

We earn well above $100,000 each year, are liberal, and both vote for the Democraptastic party. Even after taxes, we take home more than most Americans.
 
2013-01-09 02:05:40 PM

The Singing Bush: Gough: That's been my real-life experience as well. Still, most of the "high earners" that I know are rabid believers in the meritocracy myth; few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery.

That's ridiculous. I'm a white guy born in America - that's all I need to admit I won the DNA lottery.


There's a gene for being born in America?  Being white ensures a high income?

I don't see how the luck involved in being born into a good situation is supposed to contradict meritocracy.  Is it just that people don't understand what meritocracy means?
 
2013-01-09 02:08:29 PM

Kuroshin: The primary problem with taxes in the US is that withholdings from your paycheck don't really reflect what you make.  Too much gets withheld at lower incomes, while too little gets held as you go up.  My wife and I both claim zero exemptions, yet still don't have enough drawn against our incomes over the course of the year.


There's a box on the W4 that lets you withhold some specified extra dollar amount. Use the IRS tax calculator to determine how much you should owe for the upcoming year (straightforward to do if your income is steady), select the closest withholding, then have extra withheld so you don't end up owing anything.
 
2013-01-09 02:22:17 PM

BMFPitt: The Singing Bush: Gough: That's been my real-life experience as well. Still, most of the "high earners" that I know are rabid believers in the meritocracy myth; few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery.

That's ridiculous. I'm a white guy born in America - that's all I need to admit I won the DNA lottery.

There's a gene for being born in America?  Being white ensures a high income?

I don't see how the luck involved in being born into a good situation is supposed to contradict meritocracy.  Is it just that people don't understand what meritocracy means?


Eh, I was merely making the point that I understand how lucky I am to have been born a white male in America, compared to people who were born into much better situations than I who wouldn't admit they were born on third base. No, there's not a gene that determines the location of your birth, and no, it doesn't ensure a high income, but it's a hell of a lot better than being born a woman in the middle east, for example.
 
2013-01-09 02:32:15 PM

The Singing Bush: BMFPitt: The Singing Bush: Gough: That's been my real-life experience as well. Still, most of the "high earners" that I know are rabid believers in the meritocracy myth; few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery.

That's ridiculous. I'm a white guy born in America - that's all I need to admit I won the DNA lottery.

There's a gene for being born in America?  Being white ensures a high income?

I don't see how the luck involved in being born into a good situation is supposed to contradict meritocracy.  Is it just that people don't understand what meritocracy means?

Eh, I was merely making the point that I understand how lucky I am to have been born a white male in America, compared to people who were born into much better situations than I who wouldn't admit they were born on third base. No, there's not a gene that determines the location of your birth, and no, it doesn't ensure a high income, but it's a hell of a lot better than being born a woman in the middle east, for example.


But if we're going on a world perspective, people at the poverty line are high earners.

And that has nothing to do with the original comment.
 
2013-01-09 03:02:53 PM

stiletto_the_wise: Every Dec. 31, I already know what's going to be on my W2s down to the penny before they arrive. Why? Because I can add.


Or read. Hopefully the final pay stub from 2012 was correct. Particularly for you EZ filers not waiting on dividend statements from the broker and mortgage interest statements the like
 
2013-01-09 03:04:15 PM

BMFPitt: But if we're going on a world perspective, people at the poverty line are high earners.

And that has nothing to do with the original comment.


Sure it does. He's saying that "few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery," which I interpreted as being born into money (and, by the way, there is not a gene for that either - the DNA thing is only referring your parents' financial situation and not actual genes). I was saying that I think that it's ridiculous, and used myself as an example of someone who wasn't even born wealthy, but realizes there are people who would probably kill to have been born a white male and raised middle class in the suburbs. A lot of these people think they've earned everything they've been given, which is absurd.

And yes, people at the poverty line in America, even though their in a bad situation, could be in a worse situation. I'm not saying it's great and they should be jumping for joy, but they're lucky they're here and not someplace worse.
 
2013-01-09 03:06:08 PM
Surprised no one's posted this yet:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVgJF5 FsJ8k
 
2013-01-09 03:06:33 PM

BMFPitt: You pay bills manually?


Sort of. Wells fargo electronic bill pay. It ain't like it takes an entire minute a month - now that I think of it they are primarily bi-monthly bills - gas, water, garbage, and electric are all bi monthly in seattle. I have tenants - I need to at least know how much they were. and Like I said - sometimes I like to pay them ahead. Because I'm crazy.
 
2013-01-09 04:46:30 PM

The Singing Bush: Thunderpipes: So a person like me who worked hard, finally am a "high earner" am told I can only contribute 10k a year to retirement because it is not fair to others if I put, say, 15% away.

Or, you know, $17M to a 401k, or $17,500 if you're over 50 in 2013. Then your wife can do the same if she's working, and if not she can contribute $5M (or $5,500 if she's over 50) to a spousal IRA. So anywhere from $22M (more than twice what you're claiming) to $35M. And then, you can even save any amount you want and ear-mark it for retirement, it just won't be pre-tax. But because you don't know what tax rates are going to be when you retire, it might be beneficial to pay the taxes now because they might currently be lower.

If you're going to make shiat up about how much you're allowed to contribute to retirement accounts, how do I know you're not making everything else up as well?


if you are over 50 you can contribute an additional $5,500 to your 401k, so your max would be $22.5K for an individual.
 
2013-01-09 05:43:47 PM

wombatsrus: The Singing Bush: Thunderpipes: So a person like me who worked hard, finally am a "high earner" am told I can only contribute 10k a year to retirement because it is not fair to others if I put, say, 15% away.

Or, you know, $17M to a 401k, or $17,500 if you're over 50 in 2013. Then your wife can do the same if she's working, and if not she can contribute $5M (or $5,500 if she's over 50) to a spousal IRA. So anywhere from $22M (more than twice what you're claiming) to $35M. And then, you can even save any amount you want and ear-mark it for retirement, it just won't be pre-tax. But because you don't know what tax rates are going to be when you retire, it might be beneficial to pay the taxes now because they might currently be lower.

If you're going to make shiat up about how much you're allowed to contribute to retirement accounts, how do I know you're not making everything else up as well?

if you are over 50 you can contribute an additional $5,500 to your 401k, so your max would be $22.5K for an individual.


Or, if you work for or own a small business and have a SEP-IRA, with a maximum contribution for 2012 of $50K.
 
2013-01-09 05:49:52 PM

The Singing Bush: BMFPitt: But if we're going on a world perspective, people at the poverty line are high earners.

And that has nothing to do with the original comment.

Sure it does. He's saying that "few of them admit that they won the DNA lottery," which I interpreted as being born into money (and, by the way, there is not a gene for that either - the DNA thing is only referring your parents' financial situation and not actual genes). I was saying that I think that it's ridiculous, and used myself as an example of someone who wasn't even born wealthy, but realizes there are people who would probably kill to have been born a white male and raised middle class in the suburbs. A lot of these people think they've earned everything they've been given, which is absurd.

And yes, people at the poverty line in America, even though their in a bad situation, could be in a worse situation. I'm not saying it's great and they should be jumping for joy, but they're lucky they're here and not someplace worse.


Thanks,
 
2013-01-09 06:40:11 PM

JohnBigBootay: stiletto_the_wise: Every Dec. 31, I already know what's going to be on my W2s down to the penny before they arrive. Why? Because I can add.

Or read. Hopefully the final pay stub from 2012 was correct. Particularly for you EZ filers not waiting on dividend statements from the broker and mortgage interest statements the like


I wouldn't file until I get my W-2 because starting this year, your employer is required to provide you on your W-2 with the amount it spent on your health insurance, which you are required to report to the IRS. (Box 12, code DD)

http://www.irs.gov/uac/Employer-Provided-Health-Coverage-Information al -Reporting-Requirements:-Questions-and-Answers
 
2013-01-10 09:07:54 AM

stuartp9: Why do you suddenly have to pay when you go over 80k?


Tax liability increases steadily along with income, at least to $100k. The numbers are very clear.

There is also no difference in permissible deductions at some magical $80k point.

He's lying.

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i1040.pdf
 
2013-01-10 09:21:36 AM

dustman81:

I wouldn't file until I get my W-2 because starting this year, your employer is required to provide you on your W-2 with the amount it spent on your health insurance, which you are required to report to the IRS. (Box 12, code DD)

http://www.irs.gov/uac/Employer-Provided-Health-Coverage-Information al -Reporting-Requirements:-Questions-and-Answers


I didn't know about this and it seems really stupid to me. There is no increased tax liability. All this does is make you report a number they already know because they have the W-2. They would know you lied immediately, the same way they know if you under report income by "forgetting about" a 1099.

I am genuinely curious if I am missing the point of adding this requirement and would appreciate any thoughts on it.

From IRS:
Q1. Does the cost of an employee's health care benefits shown on the Form W-2 mean that the benefits are taxable to the employee?
A. No. There is nothing about the reporting requirement that causes or will cause excludable employer-provided health coverage to become taxable. The purpose of the reporting requirement is to provide employees useful and comparable consumer information on the cost of their health care coverage.
 
2013-01-10 10:54:42 AM

Pangea: I am genuinely curious if I am missing the point of adding this requirement and would appreciate any thoughts on it.

From IRS:
Q1. Does the cost of an employee's health care benefits shown on the Form W-2 mean that the benefits are taxable to the employee?
A. No. There is nothing about the reporting requirement that causes or will cause excludable employer-provided health coverage to become taxable. The purpose of the reporting requirement is to provide employees useful and comparable consumer information on the cost of their health care coverage.


The IRS needs to know how much your employer is spending on your health insurance for various penalty, etc, parts of PPACA. The W-2 is really the only form of its sort that gets transmitted to the IRS each year on each employee, so the fact that you get the data is just sorta a side-effect. It's easier to say "copy your whole W-2 into TurboTax" than to say "we need line 12 code A, B, and DD, but not code W".

An alternate guess is that it might net a handful of employers who claim deductions for spending $5000 a year per employee on health insurance, but the employee isn't getting any health insurance at all. Not that most people in that situation are looking too closely at their W-2 (a lot of people spend $50 to prepare a 1040EZ at a booth in Walmart), but a few of them might look at that number and go, "DAFUQ?"
 
2013-01-11 05:57:15 AM

Lawnchair: [snip]The purpose of the reporting requirement is to provide employees useful and comparable consumer information on the cost of their health care coverage.[snip]


Good points. I suppose there is the effect of perceived value. "Overall benefits to me as a result of government mandates are actually this amount of dollars higher? Thanks Taxb0ngo!!"

...Even though I'm a libtardo who doesn't feel the benefits of my lifestyle are outweighed by what I consider to be a moderately high tax burden.
 
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