The deadline for individuals to file and pay their 2017 taxes will be Tuesday, April 17, 2018, which is six weeks from now. As we continue to work through “tax season,” I suggest that taxpayers add a withholding review to their to-do list for “tax season.”
A quick to-do list for individual taxpayers might look like the following:
(1) Gather all tax forms and related information.
(2) File IRS Form 1040, the federal individual income tax return, for tax year 2017, to be postmarked on or before Tuesday, April 17, 2018. In the alternative, the taxpayer can file an extension, IRS Form 4868 (with payment if necessary) by the same deadline. WARNING: You must pay the 2017 income tax due by April 17, 2018, even if you obtain an extension of time to file the return. You will not be subject to a late payment penalty if both of the following requirements have been met: First, at least 90% of the total tax on your 2017 return is paid on or before the regular due date of your return (i.e. April 17, 2018) through withholding, estimated tax payments, or payments made with Form 4868; and second, the remaining balance is paid with the filing of your return by the extended deadline of October 15, 2018.
(3) File any required state tax returns or extensions (with payment if necessary).
(4) Pay federal and state estimated taxes for the first quarter of 2018 if necessary—for example, if you are self-employed. Payment can be made online using IRS Direct Pay. Most or all states can receive electronic payments online as well. For example, Massachusetts enables taxpayers to make a payment on MassTaxConnect.
(5) Before you file away your 2017 tax information into long-term storage, you should review your W-4 tax withholding, as described in our previous post.
M. Robinson Tax Law
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