Tax Day is April 18, and it’ll be here before you know it! This day is about more than just the awesome freebies, it’s the last day to timely file 2015 income tax returns. If you haven’t filed your tax return, you have an important decision to make – file now or file an extension. Check out the following tax tips to help you make a smart decision.
Gather your tax documents. Refer to our tax interview checklist to make sure you have the necessities. You’ll also need personal information for you and your dependents including birthdays, social security numbers, and driver’s licenses. If you’re receiving a refund and want to use direct deposit, you’ll need your bank account info on hand.
Know your qualifications. Identify the credits and deductions you qualify for. If you were not covered under a healthcare plan last year, know how the Affordable Care Act impacts your return.
E-file your return. Filing online is fast, easy, and you can move at your own pace. The calculations are done for you, which helps to avoid significant errors. Plus, if you choose direct deposit, you can receive your refund in two weeks or less!
Check your work. Even though time is running out, don’t rush when entering information and double check your entries. Even small mistakes on your return could lead to a big headache down the road.
Don’t Panic! If you can’t file by Tax Day, you have the option of filing an extension. The IRS will grant you a six month extension to file and submit any necessary paperwork to the IRS.
Pay now. It’s very important to remember that an extension on your return does not mean an extension on payments. If you owe the IRS, you must still pay by April 18, or you can face interest and penalties.
File Form 4868. This form is titled Application for Automatic Extension of Time To File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, but don’t let the long name scare you. It’s simple to complete and you can do it right here online with eSmart Tax.
Amend your return. If April 18 passes and you realize you’ve made a mistake, don’t worry too much. As soon as you realize your error, file Form 1040X to correct information like filing status, dependents, income, deductions or credits. You can file an amendment on eSmart Tax too!