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(Forbes)   Last minute tax tips for those of you who don't want to be hauled off to a life of servitude   (forbes.com) divider line 49
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3259 clicks; posted to Main » on 15 Apr 2013 at 2:42 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-15 02:45:04 PM
Filing on time and paying the bill are good starts.
 
2013-04-15 02:45:17 PM
Um, that's where we are now, subby.
 
2013-04-15 02:45:44 PM
Don't wait until 4/15 to file taxes?
 
2013-04-15 02:46:25 PM
FTA: "Want more taxgirl goodness?"

I'm conflicted about that question.  I'm simultaneously repulsed and aroused.
 
2013-04-15 02:46:32 PM
Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.

If the government owes you and you are waiting in line at the post office, some tax prep place or are busting your ass online...........what the fark have you been doing for 2 months that's more important than getting your money back?
 
2013-04-15 02:47:30 PM

DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.

If the government owes you and you are waiting in line at the post office, some tax prep place or are busting your ass online...........what the fark have you been doing for 2 months that's more important than getting your money back?


Complaining on Fark.
 
2013-04-15 02:49:09 PM
Don't become a Scientologist?
 
2013-04-15 02:49:52 PM
I have a tax question for any GED Tax Lawyers out there.

Back when I was a kid and started working....when I filled out my W-4, my income was so small that rather than put a number of exemptions, I just wrote "exempt" where the number should be.

Does that still work today?  I advise my son to do that on his W-4 and he said his employer told him that there has to be a number there.
 
2013-04-15 02:50:24 PM
My refund from the Feds was in my account months ago. My check to the state was placed in the mail Saturday.
 
2013-04-15 02:50:39 PM

DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.



Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.
 
2013-04-15 02:51:30 PM

DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.

If the government owes you and you are waiting in line at the post office, some tax prep place or are busting your ass online...........what the fark have you been doing for 2 months that's more important than getting your money back?


Using the scientifically proven method of determining the best tax preparation place to go: i.e. the one with the most enthusiastic dancing Statue of Liberty street sign holder. You just can't make that kind of call with only a single month's worth of data.
 
2013-04-15 02:52:04 PM

Private_Citizen: My refund from the Feds was in my account months ago. My check to the state was placed in the mail Saturday.


Same here.  fark 'em!
 
2013-04-15 02:52:12 PM

rkiller1: FTA: "Want more taxgirl goodness?"

I'm conflicted about that question.  I'm simultaneously repulsed and aroused.


I'm just repulsed.

www.bundle.com
 
2013-04-15 02:53:01 PM

The Southern Dandy: I have a tax question for any GED Tax Lawyers out there.

Back when I was a kid and started working....when I filled out my W-4, my income was so small that rather than put a number of exemptions, I just wrote "exempt" where the number should be.

Does that still work today?  I advise my son to do that on his W-4 and he said his employer told him that there has to be a number there.


The instructions on the sheet are clear.  You gotta put down an integer greater than -1 and less than 100.
 
2013-04-15 02:53:56 PM

rkiller1: The Southern Dandy: I have a tax question for any GED Tax Lawyers out there.

Back when I was a kid and started working....when I filled out my W-4, my income was so small that rather than put a number of exemptions, I just wrote "exempt" where the number should be.

Does that still work today?  I advise my son to do that on his W-4 and he said his employer told him that there has to be a number there.

The instructions on the sheet are clear.  You gotta put down an integer greater than -1 and less than 100.


So 100 then?
 
2013-04-15 02:56:17 PM
My 17, blind, Vietnam-veteran dependents in the clergy all agree that integrity on the tax form is critical.
 
2013-04-15 02:56:30 PM

rugman11: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.


Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.


I think a lot of the people who say they wait until the last minute to file because they owe money are still doing their taxes on paper, so they don't realize that you can e-file months in advance of 4/15 and then hold off on the payment till the last day.
 
2013-04-15 02:56:30 PM
She didn't write anything about how to deduct a TF membership, so I guess I'll have to wait until next year to join.
 
2013-04-15 03:00:29 PM

Snarcoleptic_Hoosier: My 17, blind, Vietnam-veteran dependents in the clergy all agree that integrity on the tax form is critical.


My dad used to have a note from his doctor that confirmed his blindness...for tax purposes.  Interestingly, he never brought that note to the DMV when renewing his drivers license.
 
2013-04-15 03:01:22 PM

Pincy: rugman11: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.


Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.

I think a lot of the people who say they wait until the last minute to file because they owe money are still doing their taxes on paper, so they don't realize that you can e-file months in advance of 4/15 and then hold off on the payment till the last day.


I'm not so sure.  I work at a public library and I've several calls already today from people looking for tax forms.
 
2013-04-15 03:01:58 PM

DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.

If the government owes you and you are waiting in line at the post office, some tax prep place or are busting your ass online...........what the fark have you been doing for 2 months that's more important than getting your money back?


If you owe, money is due today.  Filing an extension doesn't give you additional time to pay.

/Was at the IRS office today on non-April 15th related business
//Heard that phrase repeated numerous times.
 
2013-04-15 03:03:00 PM

Pincy: rugman11: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.


Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.

I think a lot of the people who say they wait until the last minute to file because they owe money are still doing their taxes on paper, so they don't realize that you can e-file months in advance of 4/15 and then hold off on the payment till the last day.


There is another benefit to filing late.  The IRS schedules a certain number of audits every year, and begins those audits as soon as the tax forms come rolling in and they stop when they reach their number.  By filing later, you reduce your chances of an audit.
 
2013-04-15 03:06:12 PM

bennett311: Don't wait until 4/15 to file taxes?


Certainly not.  JUST before midnight on 4/15 is when you get your extension form.

/Boston General Mail Facility for the win.
 
2013-04-15 03:08:57 PM
don't pay taxes, get three guaranteed meals a day, a bed, a warm place to sleep, a cool place to hang out in the summer, round the clock protection, no bills, and free medical care.

Pay taxes, eat what you can afford to provide, a bed only as good as you can afford, heat if you can afford it, air conditioning only if you can afford it, good luck being protected if you're worth less than $500k/year, bills out the yang, and medical care if you can afford it.

Not quite the american dream.
 
2013-04-15 03:10:07 PM
I filled a few month ago but kept putting off sending the state the $135 I owed them until today.... I hope the transfer went through and if not, oh well....
 
2013-04-15 03:17:12 PM
Bravo Two: don't pay taxes, get three guaranteed meals a day, a bed, a warm place to sleep, a cool place to hang out in the summer, round the clock protection, no bills, and free medical care.

Life in Obama's cabinet sure is idyllic!
 
2013-04-15 03:17:22 PM

rugman11: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.


Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.


Ooo, so with today's interest rates you made a whole 5 cents off it?
 
2013-04-15 03:21:27 PM

omgbears: rugman11: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.


Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.

Ooo, so with today's interest rates you made a whole 5 cents off it?


$4K would have made me about $40 over those two months.
 
2013-04-15 03:22:17 PM
Never do your own taxes.
 
2013-04-15 03:23:37 PM

Snarcoleptic_Hoosier: My 17, blind, Vietnam-veteran dependents in the clergy all agree that integrity on the tax form is critical.


You were widowed last year, too, right?
 
2013-04-15 03:27:13 PM
Rent Party:
There is another benefit to filing late.  The IRS schedules a certain number of audits every year, and begins those audits as soon as the tax forms come rolling in and they stop when they reach their number.  By filing later, you reduce your chances of an audit.

imgs.xkcd.com
 
2013-04-15 03:27:29 PM

omgbears: rugman11: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.


Here's the thing.  You don't have to pay your taxes when you file.  Crazy right?  I filed my taxes like two months ago and owed about $4k (wife's employer didn't withhold for nine months so we had to save the money ourselves).  I told the state and the IRS to directly debit the money today.  So not only am I not scrambling to file my taxes, but I still got to hold on to that $4k for the last two months.

Ooo, so with today's interest rates you made a whole 5 cents off it?


Eh, it was probably less than 10 bucks, but the point is, if that's something that matters to you, there's no reason to wait until today to FILE (much less calculate your taxes) when you can file in February and still not pay until today.
 
2013-04-15 03:39:06 PM
Joining in on the ones that filed several months ago and sent in the money last Friday.
 
2013-04-15 04:23:08 PM
... for those of you who don't want to be hauled off to a life of servitude

Too late.
 
2013-04-15 05:08:12 PM
I got a text from my roomate an hour ago "OMG we forgot to do my taxes!" I responded back "Whats this "WE" crap Ive been telling you for months to get off your ass and do it" No response back yet
 
2013-04-15 05:08:15 PM
for those of you who got a refund, go ahead and just punch yourself in the crotch for me now. K thanks.
oh and your welcome, you farking money sucking trolls.
 
2013-04-15 05:53:40 PM

Feltonl: for those of you who got a refund, go ahead and just punch yourself in the crotch for me now. K thanks.
oh and your welcome, you farking money sucking trolls.


There is nothing really good about getting a refund other than the psychological delusion that you are somehow sticking it to the government.  Now maybe if you don't know how to manage your finances then it is a good idea for the government to hang on to your money for you for a while?

My financial advisor is fond of telling me "my goal is to have you paying a million dollars in taxes a year".  Now I think he may be setting his sights a little high, but the point is that if you are paying a lot in taxes then you are doing pretty well for yourself.  So ya, even though my employer withholds taxes from my paycheck I still have to make quarterly estimated tax payments because of my investment income.  And you know what, you won't hear me complaining one bit.
 
2013-04-15 06:12:03 PM

Pincy: Feltonl: for those of you who got a refund, go ahead and just punch yourself in the crotch for me now. K thanks.
oh and your welcome, you farking money sucking trolls.

There is nothing really good about getting a refund other than the psychological delusion that you are somehow sticking it to the government.  Now maybe if you don't know how to manage your finances then it is a good idea for the government to hang on to your money for you for a while?

My financial advisor is fond of telling me "my goal is to have you paying a million dollars in taxes a year".  Now I think he may be setting his sights a little high, but the point is that if you are paying a lot in taxes then you are doing pretty well for yourself.  So ya, even though my employer withholds taxes from my paycheck I still have to make quarterly estimated tax payments because of my investment income.  And you know what, you won't hear me complaining one bit.


This. Getting a refund means that you let the IRS hold some of your money for a while. They got to make interest on that money and you didn't.

Anyways, the key to staying out of prison is to pay your damn taxes. Somebody has to pay for all of the stuff that makes the nation work. And that "somebody" should be all of us.
 
2013-04-15 06:39:24 PM
As long as my W-whatevers (the form you fill out when starting a job saying how much money to withhold) are correct, meh.  They're getting all the proper tax amounts taken out already.

The IRS will calculate a substitute filing for you, apparently, but won't take into account "special circumstances" that would decrease the tax you owe.  Enh, okay, I don't have any special circumstances.  I have no kids, I have no funky income, I'm a single white male mostly scraping by.  They don't owe me anything, and I don't owe them anything more than what's been taken out already.

Tax forms scare the fark out of me, and I don't have the spare cash lying around to pay somebody else to figure out ways to cheat CEO-style.
 
2013-04-15 06:43:46 PM

over_and_done: As long as my W-whatevers (the form you fill out when starting a job saying how much money to withhold) are correct, meh.  They're getting all the proper tax amounts taken out already.

The IRS will calculate a substitute filing for you, apparently, but won't take into account "special circumstances" that would decrease the tax you owe.  Enh, okay, I don't have any special circumstances.  I have no kids, I have no funky income, I'm a single white male mostly scraping by.  They don't owe me anything, and I don't owe them anything more than what's been taken out already.

Tax forms scare the fark out of me, and I don't have the spare cash lying around to pay somebody else to figure out ways to cheat CEO-style.


If you are barely scraping by then you probably just don't have the ways to cheat CEO-style available to you in the first place.

So are you saying you just don't file your taxes and rely on the IRS to do it for you?  You do realize that you will probably get some money back if you do it yourself because the IRS isn't going to give you all the deductions you are due.  Also, can't you still get in trouble for not filing?
 
2013-04-15 07:39:30 PM

Pincy: If you are barely scraping by then you probably just don't have the ways to cheat CEO-style available to you in the first place.


Heh, fair enough.  :-)


So are you saying you just don't file your taxes and rely on the IRS to do it for you?  You do realize that you will probably get some money back if you do it yourself because the IRS isn't going to give you all the deductions you are due.

I didn't claim any deduction thingies (mostly because I don't know how).  And if they owed me anything, I wouldn't know how to calculate any of them because I don't have the cash to hire a tax preparation person.  (I tried doing this once.  I don't understand the jargon.  I have no farking clue how any of this works.  The forms aren't meant to be used by random schmoes.)

I'm sure I could get back fifty bucks if I went through everything, but honestly I'd rather just let the computers take the proper cut and then keep my head down and they ignore me.  At my income level, any interaction at all with the IRS is like bad weather:  you cannot win, ever, you just hope to avoid getting flattened.  :-)   Even thinking about doing all this stuff sends me into cold sweats.

I'm also boned because all the current tax software requires you to have a copy of the previous year's return to copy some numbers off of.  Which I don't have, because I was unemployed.  Presumably the full non-idiot version of the forms handles that contingency, but I get lost and panicked about twenty lines into that version.

Also, can't you still get in trouble for not filing?

From what I can find on their website, only if (a) you owe money and (b) they contact you and don't get a response.  They've never contacted me.  I make sure my little W-whatever's are as accurate as possible when I start a job so that they don't have reason to contact me.  If I ever owe them additional money, well, the site says they'll send me a bill, and then I'll pay it.  I have no problems paying what I owe!
 
2013-04-15 08:18:09 PM

over_and_done: Pincy: If you are barely scraping by then you probably just don't have the ways to cheat CEO-style available to you in the first place.

Heh, fair enough.  :-)


So are you saying you just don't file your taxes and rely on the IRS to do it for you?  You do realize that you will probably get some money back if you do it yourself because the IRS isn't going to give you all the deductions you are due.

I didn't claim any deduction thingies (mostly because I don't know how).  And if they owed me anything, I wouldn't know how to calculate any of them because I don't have the cash to hire a tax preparation person.  (I tried doing this once.  I don't understand the jargon.  I have no farking clue how any of this works.  The forms aren't meant to be used by random schmoes.)

I'm sure I could get back fifty bucks if I went through everything, but honestly I'd rather just let the computers take the proper cut and then keep my head down and they ignore me.  At my income level, any interaction at all with the IRS is like bad weather:  you cannot win, ever, you just hope to avoid getting flattened.  :-)   Even thinking about doing all this stuff sends me into cold sweats.

I'm also boned because all the current tax software requires you to have a copy of the previous year's return to copy some numbers off of.  Which I don't have, because I was unemployed.  Presumably the full non-idiot version of the forms handles that contingency, but I get lost and panicked about twenty lines into that version.

Also, can't you still get in trouble for not filing?

From what I can find on their website, only if (a) you owe money and (b) they contact you and don't get a response.  They've never contacted me.  I make sure my little W-whatever's are as accurate as possible when I start a job so that they don't have reason to contact me.  If I ever owe them additional money, well, the site says they'll send me a bill, and then I'll pay it.  I have no problems paying what I owe!


Well, if you are happy giving the government more money then you really owe then more power to you.  Seriously, if your income is as simple as you are making it sound then you can probably get away with a 1040EZ and it would take you less than an hour to fill out.  Or you can buy H &R Block for $30 and they will make it even easier and e-file it for you as well.

So do you live in a state that doesn't have income taxes?  I hope so otherwise I'm guessing you owe them a lot of money.
 
2013-04-15 09:44:29 PM

The Southern Dandy: I have a tax question for any GED Tax Lawyers out there.

Back when I was a kid and started working....when I filled out my W-4, my income was so small that rather than put a number of exemptions, I just wrote "exempt" where the number should be.

Does that still work today?  I advise my son to do that on his W-4 and he said his employer told him that there has to be a number there.


Just put a large number, like 5 or 6.
 
2013-04-15 09:45:46 PM

FizixJunkee: Rent Party:
There is another benefit to filing late.  The IRS schedules a certain number of audits every year, and begins those audits as soon as the tax forms come rolling in and they stop when they reach their number.  By filing later, you reduce your chances of an audit.

[imgs.xkcd.com image 500x271]


My accountant is a former IRS auditor.  You can talk to her if you want.
 
2013-04-16 05:30:14 AM

DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.

If the government owes you and you are waiting in line at the post office, some tax prep place or are busting your ass online...........what the fark have you been doing for 2 months that's more important than getting your money back?


Procrastinating, what else?
 
2013-04-16 05:37:52 AM

DarthBart: DoBeDoBeDo: Seriously if you OWE taxes I can see waiting until today or even filing an extension as you're getting a free loan of sorts.

If the government owes you and you are waiting in line at the post office, some tax prep place or are busting your ass online...........what the fark have you been doing for 2 months that's more important than getting your money back?

If you owe, money is due today.  Filing an extension doesn't give you additional time to pay.

/Was at the IRS office today on non-April 15th related business
//Heard that phrase repeated numerous times.


Assuming you're right, but how does that work? How can you pay before you file? How would you know how much money to send?
I'm not against paying taxes or anything, but I resent that the IRS makes us do the paperwork. If you want us to pay you, fine, send us a bill. But they make us do it, and then audit us if we're wrong, because they already know how much we owe. And sometimes they screw up. Last year they tried to make me pay them 3 grand over a "self-employment tax", even though I'm not self-employed, because they misread something on my electronic 1040. Bah!

Anyway, just use TurboTax. It's fast, cheap and easy.
/like subby's mom
 
2013-04-16 05:44:27 AM

Pincy: over_and_done: As long as my W-whatevers (the form you fill out when starting a job saying how much money to withhold) are correct, meh.  They're getting all the proper tax amounts taken out already.

The IRS will calculate a substitute filing for you, apparently, but won't take into account "special circumstances" that would decrease the tax you owe.  Enh, okay, I don't have any special circumstances.  I have no kids, I have no funky income, I'm a single white male mostly scraping by.  They don't owe me anything, and I don't owe them anything more than what's been taken out already.

Tax forms scare the fark out of me, and I don't have the spare cash lying around to pay somebody else to figure out ways to cheat CEO-style.

If you are barely scraping by then you probably just don't have the ways to cheat CEO-style available to you in the first place.

So are you saying you just don't file your taxes and rely on the IRS to do it for you?  You do realize that you will probably get some money back if you do it yourself because the IRS isn't going to give you all the deductions you are due.  Also, can't you still get in trouble for not filing?


Actually, if someone is just scraping by, they're probably better off just taking the standard deduction anyway.
 
2013-04-16 05:52:14 AM

over_and_done: Pincy: If you are barely scraping by then you probably just don't have the ways to cheat CEO-style available to you in the first place.

Heh, fair enough.  :-)


So are you saying you just don't file your taxes and rely on the IRS to do it for you?  You do realize that you will probably get some money back if you do it yourself because the IRS isn't going to give you all the deductions you are due.

I didn't claim any deduction thingies (mostly because I don't know how).  And if they owed me anything, I wouldn't know how to calculate any of them because I don't have the cash to hire a tax preparation person.  (I tried doing this once.  I don't understand the jargon.  I have no farking clue how any of this works.  The forms aren't meant to be used by random schmoes.)

I'm sure I could get back fifty bucks if I went through everything, but honestly I'd rather just let the computers take the proper cut and then keep my head down and they ignore me.  At my income level, any interaction at all with the IRS is like bad weather:  you cannot win, ever, you just hope to avoid getting flattened.  :-)   Even thinking about doing all this stuff sends me into cold sweats.

I'm also boned because all the current tax software requires you to have a copy of the previous year's return to copy some numbers off of.  Which I don't have, because I was unemployed.  Presumably the full non-idiot version of the forms handles that contingency, but I get lost and panicked about twenty lines into that version.


Just go online next time, no software necessary. Turbotax. They will find you any and all deductions and everything, you just have to answer a few questions and type some numbers from your W-2 and whatever other forms you get sent. IIRC, the only number you need from the previous years return is your Adjusted Gross Income. If you were unemployed last year, that would probably be 0 (there's a number you can call to get your last year's AGI). I think Turbotax even will give you the phone number or a website where you can look it up. And the great thing is, if you use it again the following year, they remember these numbers for you automatically.
 
2013-04-16 10:36:19 AM

FizixJunkee: Rent Party:
There is another benefit to filing late.  The IRS schedules a certain number of audits every year, and begins those audits as soon as the tax forms come rolling in and they stop when they reach their number.  By filing later, you reduce your chances of an audit.

[imgs.xkcd.com image 500x271]


Agreed, AFAIK audits are performed based on scores from returns based on year to year changes, types of deductions, type of return, etc.   It's not a straight lottery.

I was told by an audit lawyer that if your type of return, number and type of deductions, and AIG stay relatively unchanged or change in "expected ways" (make a certain amount more based on "normal" income changes, have a kid and deductions and AIG adjust accordingly) the chances of you getting audited are very very close to 0.

If you reported 4 kids, $150k in income and had a normal AIG last year, but this year you're reporting $35k, 8 kids and some insanely low AIG this year.........expect a visit.
 
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