With the deadline to file federal and state tax returns fast approaching Monday, about 10 million Americans still have not filed.
“The bad thing about not filing on time is there are penalties and interest involved, so it is important that you try to file on time so you avoid those additional costs,” said Indianapolis-area Jackson Hewitt owner Brenda Shipp.
Shipp said her offices are busier this time of year than in tax seasons past, but not all procrastinators are created equally. While some file their taxes at the last minute each year, others were forced to wait because the drawn-out fiscal cliff negotiations caused delays in when the IRS could release all of its forms, she said.
Last-minute filers should organize their paperwork before beginning, she said. If visiting a tax preparer’s office, Shipp recommends bringing along paperwork people may not originally think of, including documentation of mortgage interest, real estate taxes, tuition payments, student loan interest and excise tax information for license plates. These documents can help make sure even last-minute filers get the credits to which they are entitled.
If Hoosiers do not think they can get the returns done in time, they have one other option.
“Tax extensions are not very common. But people do have that option, if they’d like to follow an extension with the federal or the state or both,” Shipp said.