Five Things You Must Do before April 15

IRS

Now is the time to tighten up your finances, before the IRS audit war reaches the levels of intensity for which Congress is now funding it.
The simple steps we suggest can save you a whole lot of grief with the IRS! Not to mention save you a whole lot of money by reducing the amount of taxes you are legally obligated to pay Uncle Sam. Never, never pay more than you actually owe.

Proactive Tax Planning Is Simple,
but Often Forgotten

There isn’t a moment to spare. Even though April 15 is approaching fast and 2013 is but a memory, you can still take steps to minimize your tax burden and protect yourself from potential future audits.
Here they are:
  1. Contribute to a new or existing IRA. Get a deduction for 2013 by contributing to a new or existing IRA before the due date of the 2013 tax return. We know this is pretty basic 101 stuff, but you’d be surprised how many people miss this simple but crucial step.

  2. Make sure you have contemporary acknowledgments for charitable contributions of $250 or more. The acknowledgment must be IN HAND by April 15, or you will likely lose your deduction if audited. The acknowledgment must state:

    • The amount you gave;
    • The year of your gift;
    • Whether you received anything of marketable value in exchange; and if so,
    • The value of the item received.

  3. If you don’t have proper documentation for your tax-deductible expenditures you have an option! Prepare deduction affidavits to audit-proof your return. Attach affidavits to your return along with Form 8275, Disclosure Statement, or as we call it, the audit-proof form. This audit-proofs and penalty-proofs your return.

  4. Get more time to file. IRS Form 4868, Application for Automatic Extension of Time for Filing Tax Return, automatically gets you up to six additional months (to October 15) to file your return. In no way does this action increase the likelihood of an audit or heightened scrutiny.

  5. Pay your taxes on time. If you can’t, use IRS Form 1127, Application for Extension of Time to Pay Taxes, to get up to six additional months to pay. Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request, sets the wheels in motion to establish an agreement to pay the taxes over time. IRS forms are available at www.IRS.gov.

Beware: The IRS Is Getting Cash Hungry

Tax  Audit
Never ignore IRS notices. That is how people get tripped up and into bigger trouble. And never forget, the IRS is getting more and more resources to snoop into your life. Shoring up your personal, legal, and tax issues against future problems clears your plate for coping with these challenging times.