Filing your taxes can be a hassle, depending on your situation. If you’re just an individual filling out a W-2, you can likely handle that yourself. But when your return is more complex, you might find that it’s worth hiring a professional, someone who can save you not only time and stress but also money. As a business owner, it’s important to understand your federal, state, and local tax requirements.
At Simplified Business Solutions, we have a staff on board staying up-to-date with the latest tax laws and how they can benefit you. Tax laws change every day and keeping up with them is a full-time job that will take you away from your business. A tax return is much more than just a document submitted to the IRS. Your tax return is used in so many other areas that it is wise to make sure there are not any unwanted assets or income.
If the IRS reaches out, we will take the call. The IRS can get tricky and you don’t want to give them the wrong information. The tax code changes every year.
Simplified Business Solutions stays on top of new developments in tax laws to decrease both your current and future tax liabilities. We offer practical, and proactive, solutions to tax planning that put your business or personal needs first. We provide our individual and business clients with the taxation expertise and knowledge that they deserve.
Our goal is to make the process of tax planning and preparation a simpler process that provides timely, meaningful information, and assists you in minimizing your tax liabilities currently and into the future.
How a taxpayer’s filing status affects their tax return
A taxpayer’s filing status tells the IRS about them and their tax situation. This is just one reason taxpayers should familiarize themselves with each option and know their correct filing status. The IRS Interactive Tax Assistant can help them determine their filing status.
A taxpayer’s filing status typically depends on whether they are considered unmarried or married on Dec. 31, which determines their filing status for that entire year.
More than one filing status may apply in certain situations. If this is the case, taxpayers can usually choose the filing status that allows them to owe the least amount of tax.
When preparing and filing a tax return, filing status determines:
- If the taxpayer is required to file a federal tax return
- If they should file a return to receive a refund
- Their standard deduction amount
- If they can claim certain tax credits
- The amount of tax they owe
Here are the five filing statuses:
- Single. Normally, this status is for taxpayers who are unmarried, divorced or legally separated under a divorce or separate maintenance decree governed by state law.
- Married filing jointly. If a taxpayer is married, they can file a joint tax return with their spouse. If one spouse died in 2021, the surviving spouse can use married filing jointly as their filing status for 2021 if they otherwise qualify to use that status.
- Married filing separately. Married couples can choose to file separate tax returns. This may benefit taxpayers who want to be responsible only for their own tax or if it results in less tax than filing a joint return.
- Head of household. Unmarried taxpayers may be able to file using this status, but special rules apply. For example, the taxpayer must have paid more than half the cost of keeping up a home for themselves and a qualifying person living in the home for half the year.
- Qualifying widow or widower with dependent child. This status may apply to a taxpayer filing a 2021 tax return if their spouse died in 2019 or 2020, and they didn’t remarry before the end of 2021 and have a dependent child. Other conditions also apply.
How long do I need to keep my tax records?
- Three years is the amount of time that the IRS has the ability to audit you.
- If you file a fraudulent return or don’t file at all, keep your records as long as you can.
- If you don’t report more than 25% of your earnings – 6 years.
- If you claim a loss from bad debt deduction or worthless securities – 7 years.
How do I file a tax extension?
If you need more time to do your taxes, complete and submit Form 4868 to the IRS before April 18th, 2022. This gives you an additional 6 months to prepare your tax return. Requesting an extension only gives you more time to file without penalty, it does not give you additional time to pay.