Each year a large number of taxpayers wait until the final days to file; but we’re here to help! Whether you are filing online or with a tax preparer, keeping just a few last-minute guidelines top of mind will help you focus on exactly what to do, avoid further delay, and ensure that the last-minute rush does not negatively impact their tax filing process and financial bottom-line.


Answers to some key questions from last-minute filers:


  • How can I be sure to get my biggest refund possible? From benefits relating to life changes experienced in 2010 to new and extended tax laws, knowing which credits and deductions you can claim can help maximize a tax refund or reduce a tax liability owed. With so many tax law changes every year, working with a knowledgeable tax preparer can help to ensure you claim what you qualify for and avoid leaving money on the table.


  • What is my fastest option for filing? IRS e-file is not only faster than mailing a tax return; it’s also more accurate and includes a confirmation of receipt, so taxpayers know their returns have been received before the deadline. When you e-file and use direct deposit into a bank account, you can receive your refund in as little as 8 to 15 days.  Jackson Hewitt provides FREE electronic filing with paid tax preparation.


  • What if I owe, but can’t afford to pay? If you are unable to pay the full amount of taxes you owe, it is important to pay as much as possible to avoid a high assessment of penalties and interest. Talk to your tax preparer about the various payment options including: the IRS Installment Agreement, payment by credit card, and scheduled direct debit from your checking or savings account. 


  • What is an extension, and how do I know if I need one? An extension of your federal tax return is a request to file your tax return by October 17 and still be considered timely filed. Pay as much as possible, but know that to avoid certain penalties, you must pay 90 percent or more of your estimated tax liability on or before April 18. 


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