Chief Tax Information Officer
Published on: December 31, 2020
Let’s find a tax preparation office for you
Oh no! We may not fully support the browser or device software you are using !
To experience our site in the best way possible, please update your browser or device software, or move over to another browser.
You may think Tax Day is months away and you don’t need to start planning, but we actually recommend you start preparation now. Not only will this avoid potential refund shock, you’ll also have a better understanding of your financial situation and what you’ll need to bring to your first appointment with your Tax Pro.
A survey we recently conducted with Dynata found that 44% of respondents started thinking about their taxes toward the end of the year. This is not surprising as year-end is a great time to start organizing and preparing. Check out this tax document checklist that will also help you fully prepare for your appointment.
Another reason to begin planning sooner than later? This tax season will be different for a large number of taxpayers and there are a lot of misconceptions about the current tax law. For example: 77% of survey respondents misunderstand how the home office deduction works, believing that just about anyone can take the deduction.
Unfortunately, that’s not true. Just because you worked from home this year doesn’t mean you can deduct the space you use as a home office. In fact, this deduction ONLY applies to those who are self-employed.
Also, while 77% of respondents don’t plan to make year-end adjustments on their taxes (or just don’t understand their choices), it’s a good idea to understand your options for this year and to plan for 2021. This includes:
Finally, the last reason to start planning now is there are constantly new updates and changes in tax law that could potentially impact you that you want to be prepared for. For example, provisions of the December 21, 2020 bill include a new economic impact payment (EIP); meaning there may be two EIPs this year. If you, or someone you know, doesn’t receive the full amount they are due from both stimulus payments, you may get the money you are due when you file your 2020 tax return.
Visit a Jackson Hewitt® office near you or schedule an appointment today to put a plan into place for when you are ready to file your 2020 income tax return.
For example: increasing your retirement fund contributions or making charitable donations.
For example, how collecting unemployment will change your earned income, or what it means to have a side gig or a change in your employment.
The Jackson Hewitt survey was conducted online by Dynata on November 30, 2020 among 1,000 American adults aged 18 and older. Respondents to the survey were selected from those who volunteered to participate in online surveys. One thousand complete surveys were collected using the sample framework based on U.S. Census data for age, ethnicity, gender, region, and income.
About the Author
Mark Steber is Senior Vice President and Chief Tax Information Officer for Jackson Hewitt. With over 30 years of experience, he oversees tax service delivery, quality assurance and tax law adherence. Mark is Jackson Hewitt’s national spokesperson and liaison to the Internal Revenue Service and other government authorities. He is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), holds registrations in Alabama and Georgia, and is an expert on consumer income taxes including electronic tax and tax data protection.
Our Tax Pros will connect with you one-on-one, answer all your questions, and always go the extra mile to support you.
We have flexible hours, locations, and filing options that cater to every hardworking tax filer.
We’ve seen it all and will help you through it all. 35 years of experience and our guarantees back it up.