Friday, April 09, 2010

CCH: Five Reasons to Get Your Tax Return out the Door

CCH, one of the dominant sources of material on U. S. tax law, provides five reasons why taxpayers should strive to complete their tax returns by April 15. The reasons include: taking the failure to file penalty out of play; avoiding the failure-to-pay penalty if you owe; speeding up receipt of any refund (in effect, an interest-free loan to Washington) that you deserve; the IRS allows charging taxes through a third party and may permit installment payments if paid off within three years and the IRS is being more liberal than usual this year with its "offer in compromise" program.

The CCH argument, as would be expected, has a lot of validity. A related note: "tax relief" programs can sound appealing if you are looking at owing a sizable amount of money--but be careful! While legitimate tax structuring businesses CAN help you organize your way out of tax debt; there definitely are outfits who will charge extremely high fees, take positions of questionable legality or both. In most cases, a tax professional such as a local Enrolled Agent or CPA will be just as useful at a lower cost.

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