Ask TaxMama Issue 671 – Honoring MLK Weekend

Dear Family,

Well, finally. I’ve been waiting for the IRS to release their guidelines for farmers and fisherman. Normally, they have a special provision to make only one estimated tax payment – as along as they pay it all by January 15th. But…the IRS didn’t have forms ready and they didn’t have depreciation computations ready and so forth. So…we’ve been waiting for guidance. About an hour ago, it arrived – fresh off the presses for you!

Also in today’s IRS News is information about a special provision for seniors to use their IRA accounts to make charitable contributions for LAST YEAR. It’s a little complicated. But, you do have until January 31st to do this. Less than two weeks…so look into this option if your IRA has too much money in it and you’re tithing anyway.

Something else that’s going on in the background, but isn’t posted. Some new guidelines to take effect NEXT year, about office in home. The IRS is proposing a flat deduction of $5 per square foot – up to a maximum of $1,500. You won’t have to depreciate the home, or give up part of your mortgage or property tax deduction. You can still take the full amount on Schedule A. These are proposed regulations and the IRS is accepting comments on them. I have to think about this. Where can I rent office space for a mere $5 per sq ft per year? (Maybe in Timbuktu – but certainly not in Los Angeles or New York.) Comments are welcome until April 15th.  (Rate changed from $3 to $5 based on readers’ corrections. Thanks!)

In my MarketWatch column, next Tuesday, you’ll learn more about what the online tax filing companies have in store for you. It’s going to be an exciting season for them and us, with everything coming up late. But, you will find lots of answers from most of the companies. Kind of fun, though, some people are calling up one tax software service, while using another – and getting answers!

Also next week will be information about how to file your tax returns for free. For more TaxMama® tips, keep an eye on this page and the whole Tax Site. There are some very interesting stories – including the best country to retire to if you want to give up your American citizenship.

In this week’s Equifax Blog Ilyce Glink explains how to avoid some of the 2013 tax hikes. And more. http://blog.equifax.com/

In It’s a WAHM Thing, you can learn a little about how to lighten your tax burden.

Our classes for 2012 are now all done. We’ll start teaching at CPE Link again in May. And the EA classes are just wrapping up…with review sessions every couple of weeks until the February 28th testing deadline ends.

Note: IRS is insisting that Certified Acceptance Agents (folks who help you get your alien tax ID number) must take forensic training in how to identify forged or false documents. Susan Holtgrefe, EA in PA found you a class – www.e-idtraining.com .  While they can’t give discounts for one person, they can if you sign up with 5 or more. Tell them TaxMama sent you.

Monday is the Martin Luther King, Jr federal holiday. Government offices will be closed – so will we. However, this is a great day to start thinking about service – volunteering in your own community to get involved, help others, get to know neighbors you just nod to. Look online for local celebrations and local opportunities. Go out and be nice to someone!

And have a great weekend!

As always, we love your feedback, opinions and ideas.

You are what makes all this fun – and interesting!

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Hugs from your favorite TaxNerd,

Eva Rosenberg, EA

Your TaxMama® www.TaxMama.com

 

01/31/2012 File Heavy Highway Vehicles Form 2290 – various deadlnes – see form instructions
01/31/2012 File Form 730 – Tax Return for Wagers (Accepting Wagers, Pool, Lottery for Profit). Note: This is a monthly form.
01/31/2012 Furnish W-2s recipients
01/31/2012 Furnish 1099 MISC to recipients
01/31/2012 Furnish 1099 Interest to recipients
01/31/2012 Furnish 1099 Dividends to recipients
01/31/2012 Furnish 1098s to borrowers – Mortgage interest
01/31/2012 File 4th, Quarter Payroll Reports
01/31/2012 File Employers Annual Payroll Reports
01/31/2012 File Annual Payroll for Agricultural employees
01/31/2012 Employer’s Annual Federal Unemployment (FUTA) Tax Return
01/31/2012 Individuals who missed 4th estimated pmt – May file & pay taxes now

One thought on “Ask TaxMama Issue 671 – Honoring MLK Weekend

  1. Anna says:

    “…Something else that’s going on in the background, but isn’t posted. Some new guidelines to take effect NEXT year, about office in home. The IRS is proposing a flat deduction of $3 per square foot –”

    From one of your recent emails – but I believe the amount is $ 5/sq foot rather than $ 3.
    Per IR-2013-5

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