To avoid delays in receiving tax refunds, Georgia residents should take care to avoid certain common mistakes when completing their returns. While many people may believe that only significant mistakes will cause the Internal Revenue Service to hold on to their refunds, many delays are actually caused by easily preventable mistakes.
Taxpayers in Georgia who have a balance when they complete their returns are not alone. The Internal Revenue Service reports that more than 18 million people in the country owed federal taxes in September 2014. Annually, around 10 million people have to pay tax penalties.
Georgia residents who were waiting to file their 2017 income return so that they could claim a tax extender may now be able to file, depending on which tax break they intend to claim. Several tax breaks that expired in 2016 were renewed for 2017, but that didn't actually happen until early in 2018. The Internal Revenue Service told people who wished to claim any of the tax breaks to wait until it was ready to process them. The IRS is now ready to accept returns that claim any of three specific benefits, but people who wish to claim any of the others will still have to wait.
The IRS says that it will process 155 million tax returns during the 2018 income tax season. However, not all Georgia residents necessarily need to file a tax return. This will depend on one's earned income and personal exemption. Those who do have to file an income tax return for 2018 will have until April 17 to do so. This is because April 15 and April 16 are a Sunday and a holiday.
Georgians who have invested in bitcoin should be aware that they must report any income that they made from selling or trading cryptocurrency on their income tax returns. Some people have the mistaken idea that digital currency is beyond the reach of the Internal Revenue Service, but it is not.
The tax overhaul passed by Congress in December of 2017 changed little relating to long-term retirement matters. However, one change could have a major impact on Georgia residents hoping to retire soon. Specifically, the tax overhaul eliminates so-called do-overs for Roth IRA conversions. Under the prior law, an individual could convert a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA and then avoid a large tax bill by converting it back to a traditional IRA by October of the following year.
The changes to federal income taxes passed late in 2017 have left some people in Georgia wondering what to withhold from their paychecks. The Internal Revenue Service has issued new withholding tables, but the agency has not yet had a chance to provide employers with new W-4 forms. Although employers may apply information from their workers' existing W-4 forms, these forms do not match the new tax system. People might end up with miscalculated deductions from their paychecks.
Georgia taxpayers have to file their federal income tax returns on time or incur possible penalties, according to the Internal Revenue Code Section 6651. For returns that are mailed, this means making sure that they are mailed on time. The timely filing rule also applies to electronically filed returns. However, there are reasons that an e-return may be sent back.
Georgia residents who are the victims of financial abuse at the hands of their partners may be given relief by the IRS. For instance, an individual might apply for innocent spouse relief. If granted, that person will not be held liable for taxes owed on a joint return. This may be true if there was a balance because the other spouse deliberately withheld income.
Tax planning is something that savvy Georgia residents are aware of year-round, but it becomes especially relevant at the end of the calendar year. For individuals thinking about these issues when the end of the current year approaches, there are a number of things that might be done to minimize tax liability or to take advantage of available incentives and tax breaks.