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Tax Filing Season Starts January 30th – A late start due to late law passage

When Washington makes retroactive law changes in the 11th hour, it causes havoc on the thousands of those who must create tax forms, modify instructions, update tax software and get all the programs ready to prepare taxes. The IRS has let us know their timeline for tax return readiness. Here is what you need to know.

“We have worked hard to open tax season as soon as possible.”

– Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller

The IRS recently announced that it is targeting January 30th as the first day it will begin processing 2012 tax returns. This delay in filing is due to the late passage of the Tax Relief Act during the first week of January. Here is what you need to know.

Paper or Plastic (digital). It makes no difference if you e-file or send in a paper tax return. Both processes will begin on January 30th.

Don’t Wait. A number of tax returns will not be allowed to process until late February or early March. Because of this, procrastinators could pay a heavy price in getting their returns processed and refunds paid versus other tax years. So get your information in as soon as possible.

Software Updates too. Just because the IRS says they anticipate processing tax returns on January 30th does not mean all returns will be processed on that date. The software vendors must also update their programs AFTER the IRS provides revised specs for their tax forms.

Some Returns will need to wait. A number of tax returns will not be filed until late February or early March. This includes tax returns that have the following:

  • Residential Energy Credits
  • Qualified Adoption Expenses
  • Depreciation of Property
  • General Business Credits
  • Domestic Production Activity Deductions (DPAD)

Remember, just because the processing of your tax return may be delayed does not mean you should delay the preparation of your return. Send in your tax information as soon as possible. Having your tax return ready when the processing window is open will help ensure the timely filing of your return and the receipt of any potential refunds.