Filing your income tax return may not be at the top of your list of what you want to do but recently has been or is at the top of your must do list.
Do you find this process difficult or complex? Filing your income tax return can be painful for various reasons including, among others: having to pay taxes (see prior article on Calculating Estimated Tax Payments) and unfamiliarity with tax reporting and rules.
Do you file your own tax return, consult a friend or use a professional? Your knowledge and comfort level with the tax code and tax forms are key factors in this decision. The IRS has various resources available to learn about tax reporting on their website if you invest the time to properly utilize them. These resources include:
- IRS Form instructions and publications
- IRS virtual small business workshop (nine lessons covering various tax related topics)
- IRS video portal (various topics of interest to individuals and small businesses)
You may consider using a paid preparer. A properly selected paid preparer should be up on current tax rules, be able to efficiently answer your questions and prepare your tax return(s). Providing good, organized records allows a paid preparer to spend time focusing on your tax situation and areas for improvement while keeping fees reasonable. Choosing a qualified paid preparer can reduce your tax stress, provide a valued advisor to your business and allow you to focus more on your business. The IRS provides on their website some tips for choosing a paid preparer.
Understanding your taxes and/or choosing a paid preparer is an important business decision that can have an important impact on your personal and business success.
Article written by Richard R. Dahl, a CPA and Senior Tax Manager with Security National Life Insurance. The content of this article is not intended as tax advice and cannot be used for avoiding tax penalties or promoting or recommending any transaction. Individual circumstances should be discussed with a qualified tax professional.