Yes, it is that time of year. Now that the holidays are over, it’s time to start thinking about income tax. Were there any life event changes such as getting married, having a baby, adopting a child, death of a spouse, purchasing a home or any other events that would affect your income tax return?
Start accumulating your documents to prepare your 2013 income tax return. Set aside a box, a file or a cubby to hold tax documents as you receive them in the mail. Be on the lookout for envelopes with “tax document enclosed” on them. You should receive Form W-2 if you were an employee in 2013, Form 1098 Mortgage Interest Statement if you own property, as well as various types of Form 1099, if any. You’ll also need Forms K-1 from pass through entities that you have an interest in. You should have been accumulating documents and receipts for tax deductions and contributions received throughout the year.
How will you prepare your income tax return? The IRS offers a free filing on their website for taxpayers with adjusted gross income (AGI) of $57,000 or less. The free filing is a good option for taxpayers with uncomplicated tax situations. There are also numerous tax preparation software packages on the market for individuals ineligible to take advantage of the IRS Free File.
Hiring a professional to prepare your income tax return makes sense when your tax situation includes unusual tax circumstances, numerous investments in rentals or partnerships, or you just need to be confident that your return was prepared correctly and that all possible tax savings were considered.
Now get prepared and get your 2013 income tax return filed by April 15, 2014! (An extension to file is available, but not to pay if you can’t meet this deadline).