Ask TaxMama Issue 672 Happy Super Bowl Weekend

Dear Family,

It’s been a long day. Everyone seems to be working late. I am getting emails from the East Coast well after 8:00 pm their time. Of course, me? I’ve been on hold a lot of the day.

The Tax Preparer Hotline (aka Practitioner Priority Service) hung up on me a few times. Once it was a staff member, a couple of other times it was the telephone computer. The final fellow told me the system has been doing that. HE was wonderful. He got me the information I needed on a tax ghost, someone that others told me doesn’t exist.

(Of course, this was after I made the client drive all over town to find the Social Security Administration office and get proof that his name and SSN match the one he’s been using to work under.  Poor baby. Sometimes, they really hide those offices too well.

In honor of Jeff’s wild goose chase, today’s Money Funny is all about those dreadful chain letters – and what to do with them. Come on, you’re smiling. A little. (Hey, someone sent me one earlier this week to send to 8 women. Only half of them love me enough to send it back! Hmpf! You know what’s going to happen to them! You don’t? Read today’s Money Funny.

The IRS is busy putting out press releases. But they are not answering questions (at least not about things I can’t find on the site on my own). They finally opened up electronic filing on January 30th. You would think THEY would want to know how many tax returns rammed their way through the Cloudy Gates that day. Nope. Nary a clue. At least they’re not saying.
What are they saying? Well, that folks who want to claim an education credit still can’t file their tax returns. At all. And some businesses will be able to start efiling on Monday. There are a bunch of forms that still aren’t ready, so…many businesses will have to wait. Incidentally, the IRS has announced their programs to help Hurricane Sandy victims. They will need extra time and leeway to get their records sorted out. The information is available in English and Spanish.
They also froze the entire Return Preparer Program due to having lost a lawsuit. So for now, no one who hasn’t already gotten one, can get a preparer tax ID number (PTIN), even though the IRS won’t accept an efiled return signed by a preparer without one. And you can’t sit for the EA exam without one. (But they aren’t running the RTRP exam for now.) Oh yes, and the continuing education requirement for RTRPs has been suspended. Although, from some of the questions I got today (from a variety of sources), I know that I would never have been able to answer them if I had not been taking courses. So how can other people know those areas of the law?

In my MarketWatch column, next Monday, you’ll get the February To Do list. Last week, in case you missed it, we talked about your options on getting your tax returns done at no charge…or f..r.e.e.

In this week’s Equifax Blog you’ll learn how to make your record-keeping easier.

That’s it for now. I am calling it a day.

Go enjoy some cherries during National Cherry Month. They’re quite sweet already.

And have a great weekend!

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

You are what makes all this fun – and interesting!

TaxNerd gear makes a bold statement year-round.

Hugs from your favorite TaxNerd,

Eva Rosenberg, EA

Your TaxMama®


02/15/2013 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
02/28/2013 File W-3, W-2’s with Social Security Admin
02/28/2013 File US transmittal of US information Returns
02/28/2013 Mortgage Interest file Form 1098s with IRS
03/15/2013 Foreign Persons US Income subject to withholdings
03/15/2013 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month

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