I'm going to step aside from the new tax laws for a moment and share what is happening with the 2017 tax returns that we professionals are doing right now.
Since Jan. 29, the IRS and most states began accepting tax returns via e-filing. Paper returns are also being accepted. And there are certain circumstances where papers must be filed; albeit, they are processed slower, as human hands are involved.
However, not everyone who qualifies for a refund will receive their refunds quickly, even this early in the season, due to the IRS checks and balances for earned income credit, child credits and tuition credits. Direct deposit will get you your refund faster than a mailed check. However, please do not ask when you will get your refund because we have no control over how quickly your refund is issued.
If you choose to make an appointment with a professional, please understand that we can only provide you with a starting cost to prepare your return over the phone. We cannot give an exact price for preparing your return without meeting with you to determine your individual needs.
As enrolled agents, we study tax law year-round. Unfortunately, this tax filing season, we are dealing with questions not only about 2017 tax returns but also about what the 2018 changes towards a flat tax will mean. We know this means more time spent on more appointments for business owners or planning to make sure that clients are prepared for the upcoming changes.
Pack your patience while gathering the 2017 tax documents. They are just arriving to you now. And, please make sure you have everything before filing because amending a return for leaving out income can mean you returning refunds or receiving stiff penalties for under reporting income.
Karen S. Durda, EA, President of Century Accounting and Tax Services, Inc., has been in the profession since 1984. As an Enrolled Agent credentialed by the Treasury Department, she has the rights as afforded by Congress to represent individuals and businesses before tax authorities. Since May 2012, she has also had the distinction of being a Dave Ramsey Endorsed Local Provider, assisting in budgeting and financial peace for a four-county area and parts of Myrtle Beach.As a Qualified Business expert with the New Hanover County courts, she has experience and knowledge of various scopes of professions and industries, such as medical, health services, legal, construction, retail, real estate, auto sales and service, insurance and restaurant. Continuous tax law courses throughout the year keep her up-to-date on all tax rules, regulations and law changes, as well as business trends, to better serve her clients.
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