There are only a few days left for taxpayers who still need to file their 2012 income tax returns before the April 15 deadline. According to the IRS, roughly 23 percent of American taxpayers file their returns during the final 14 days of the season.
"If you have yet to submit a tax return, don't fret," says Mark Steber, chief tax officer, Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. "It's important to meet with a tax preparer so that the last-minute rush doesn't result in any costly mistakes or delays with your return. With many locations offering extended hours, the tax preparers at Jackson Hewitt® will be able to help filers meet the April 15 deadline and get the most out of their returns."
If you’re still filing, Steber offers the following important tips:
- Gather all necessary tax documents – Make sure to locate all your tax documents, including: W-2s, any 1099s, records of expenses such as tuition and associated fees for yourself, spouse and dependents. Be sure to include any mortgage interest and real estate taxes, charitable contributions and medical expenses as well. Using a copy of last year's return may also help in gathering your records.
- File electronically – E-file your tax return when you file this year. Not only is it faster and more accurate, e-filing is also safer by providing a confirmation of receipt, so taxpayers know their returns have been received before the deadline. Jackson Hewitt offers free e-filing with paid tax preparation.
- Don't overlook any deductions and credits – In addition to the tax law changes, don't forget about any life changes that may drive new tax benefits. If you got married, divorced or adopted a child / children this year, make sure the name with the Social Security Administration matches the name on all identification and income information.
- Ask about extensions – By requesting an extension, you can postpone your return until October 15, 2013. Taxpayers should keep in mind that an extension does not give additional time to pay any taxes owed. A professional tax preparer can help assess whether there are taxes due and determine whether filing an extension is needed.