To Be or Not to Be in the Tax Preparation Saga: Advice from 30 years of experience from Linda Osborne, Howell Board Member
|Linda Osborne, CPA|
If not, our own Linda Osborne, CPA and Board Member of the Doris A. Howell Foundation has very valuable advice: find a tax preparer. We might seem a little biased as we have such a wonderful resource with us. But consider this: unless you want to go through the 292-page guide on what is new in tax deductions and wish to click away on the thousands of links provided to optimize your tax return – not only at a federal level but at a state level as well, consulting with a tax preparer who spends all year learning about new tax preparation laws, trends and benefits is probably the best option out there.
A couple of recently passed laws that might have a tax implication in your 2013 tax return exemplify the need to hire an expert: The Affordable Care Act and Tax Preparation for Same Sex Marriages.
For most people, the Affordable Care Act has no effect on their 2013 federal income tax return – in other words, you will probably not be required to report your health care coverage or claim the premium tax credit until you file your 2014 return in 2015. However, there are items that might need to be considered when filing your 2013 tax return, such as the additional Medicare tax, for example.
|Image courtesy of Stuart Miles|
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From Preparing Taxes to Women’s Health Advocacy.
She currently oversees the financial health of the Foundation as Chief Financial Officer, and we couldn't be in better hands!
Best stated by Mark Twain, “One who carries a cat by the tail learns something that can’t be learned in no other way”. Not that she has carried many cats by the tail, bur her best piece of advice? Actually a couple:
- Make sure you regularly check with your tax preparer. He or she will be fully aware of the latest news on the year’s tax law changes, and will offer expertise on the best way to file your taxes. He or she will let you know about the documents/records you need to save throughout the year that are tax deductible and can work in your favor.
- Beware of Scams: Thieves wanting to get your tax refund or steal your identity are more active than ever! Please be aware that the IRS DOES NOT INITIATE DIRECT CONTACT WITH TAX PAYERS, EVER. Do not engage with any e-mail, phone call or fictitious ‘contact attempt’ from the IRS. The IRS will always contact you with a notice via the postal service. Please also be aware that it is next to impossible to pay “Zero Taxes”, as many e-books might claim. Paying taxes is not a voluntary issue, but an obligation.
Remember that in filing your tax returns, it’s all about the advice that comes from years of experience and preparation, and not filling out forms. For more information on what’s new at the IRS, visit www.irs.gov/uac/What's-Hot