The IRS announced it opened the 2024 income tax return filing season on January 29. That’s when the tax agency began accepting and processing 2023 tax year returns.
Here are answers to some FAQs about the tax filing season:
What are this year’s tax deadlines for individuals?
The filing deadline to submit 2023 returns or file an extension is Monday, April 15, 2024, for most taxpayers. Taxpayers living in Maine or Massachusetts have until April 17, due to state holidays. If taxpayers reside in a federally declared disaster area, they may have additional time to file.
What are this year’s tax deadlines for Businesses?
Corporations on a calendar year-end follow the same deadline as individuals, with the deadline of Monday, April 15, 2024. The filing deadline for filing calendar year-end Partnerships and S-Corporation returns (or filing an extension) is Friday, March 15, 2024.
When is my return due if I request an extension?
If you’re requesting a 1040 extension, you’ll have until October 15, 2024, to file. Keep in mind that an extension of time to file your return does not grant you any extension of time to pay your taxes. You should always estimate what taxable income will be and pay any taxes owed by the April 15 deadline to avoid penalties & interest.
When should I file my tax return?
Some individuals wait to file (i.e., very close to the deadline date) to file their return (or to file for an extension), but there are reasons to file earlier. Filing early can provide some protection from tax identity theft. If you are expecting a refund, the sooner you file, the quicker a refund will be issued.
What’s tax identity theft and how does early filing help protect me?
Typically, in a tax identity theft scam, a thief uses another person’s information to file a fake tax return and claim a fraudulent refund early in the filing season.
The legitimate taxpayer discovers the fraud when filing their return. The IRS tells them that the return is being rejected because one with the same Social Security Number has already been filed for the tax year. The victim should be able to eventually prove that their return is the valid one, but it can be time-consuming and frustrating to straighten out. It can also delay a refund for many months.
Filing early provides some proactive defense. The reason for this is simple: If you file first, the tax return filed by a potential thief will be the return to be rejected.
Are there other benefits to filing my tax return early?
Besides protecting against tax identity theft, another benefit of early filing is you will get a refund sooner. According to the IRS, “most refunds will be issued in less than 21 days.” The time could end up being shorter if you file electronically and receive a refund by direct deposit into a bank account. Direct deposit can help to avoid the possibility that a refund check could be lost, stolen, returned to the IRS as undeliverable, or caught in mail delays.
When will my W-2s and 1099s arrive?
To file your tax return, you will need all of your Forms W-2(s) and 1099(s). January 31, 2024, is the deadline for employers to file 2023 W-2s and, generally, for businesses to file Form 1099s for recipients of any 2023 interest, dividends, or reportable miscellaneous income payments (including those made to independent contractors).
If you have not received a W-2 or 1099 by early February, first contact the entity that should have issued it. If that does not get the results you were hoping for, ask us how to proceed.
What other documents will I need to prepare my return?
Besides the W-2s and any 1099s issued to you, you will need any other government forms that were issued to you during 2023 for income you received and deductions. Common forms may include SSA-1099s, Schedule K-1s for passthrough entity businesses, Form 1098, and 1098-Ts. You will also need information for any self-employment businesses.
What if I have questions about my return?
Feel free to reach out to your Wegner contact if you have any questions on the preparation and filing of your tax return. Separate penalties apply for failing to file and pay on time — and they can be quite severe. Even though the IRS isn’t beginning to process returns until January 29, if you have gathered all of your tax return items, you do not need to wait to send that information in. We can help ensure you file an accurate, timely return and receive all the tax breaks you’re entitled to.