NASE Shares Tips On Filing Accurate Tax Returns
This year, Americans have a bit longer to file their taxes, with an extension to April 18. But with the deadline quickly approaching, the National Association of the Self-Employed (NASE) has released nine tips to help small businesses file beneficial and accurate tax returns.
9. Don’t just guess on business miles, or travel expenses. The NASE encourages filers to take the time to check records, update mileage logs and perform necessary due diligence. If a question ever comes up, it won’t be tomorrow but several years from now, and filers may not remember where they got that number.
8. Bookmark the IRS website at IRS.gov, and the NASE website at NASE.org. The NASE says to use these resources to ask questions, search the sites and review potential deductions that may have been missed.
7. While most deductions come straight from the business checkbook, some items, like the business use of a personal vehicle or the business use of a space in a home as a home office, are easily forgotten because they don’t show up as a cash disbursement. In addition, many small-business owners forget about the options for a deductible retirement plan contribution.
6. The NASE Minute features a number of online short videos that can help filers think outside the box, including Hire Your Kid, Preparing an Audit Proof Return, Missing Deductions and Deducting Health Care Premiums.
5. Be extremely diligent in taking advantage of every single legitimate deduction. Do not avoid a deduction because it may be a “red flag.” Foregoing a deductible item is like paying the IRS hard-earned money in exchange for reducing the chance of an audit from about .0087 to .0086.
4. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) tax filers must have a qualified health plan or pay an extra tax on the 2015 tax return. As the program is only in its second year, ensure the right boxes are checked based on the choices made during 2015 for health coverage.
3. Businesses should have received 1099s, W-2s, 1098s, K-1s, 1099INTs, 1099DIVs, etc. Find all of that paper and organize, summarize and secure it. If a question ever comes up and the IRS wants to know, most questions can be answered with a single piece of paper.
2. As Emancipation Day is being celebrated on Friday, April 15, this year the federal government has extended the tax-filing deadline to Monday, April 18.
1. If April 18 arrives and the return is not done, request an extension using IRS form 4868 for an extra six months to complete all the forms. Remember that this is an extension of time to file, not an extension of time to pay.