Susan Tompor: Tax tips for the last minute

IRS reminds seniors to remain on alert to phone scams

Thompson runs the IRS-authorized tax preparation service at Alabama State University, one of three free tax service programs in the Montgomery area. By law, District of Columbia holidays impact tax deadlines for everyone nationwide in the same way federal holidays do.

In general, people must file a tax return if they had gross income of more than $10,000 as a single filer or more than $20,000 as a married couple filing jointly.

Turbo Tax, H&R Block, and other big box preparers have do it-yourself apps to help you file. While that can be a scary situation, you don't want to try to dodge the IRS.

If you need more than 120 days, you might be able to sign up via the IRS website for a monthly installment plan as long as you pay your tax debt in full.

If information from W-2s, 1099s and other documents is not reported on the proper form and according to the correct method, the IRS will easily identify discrepancies and will issue a notice to the taxpayer. See Form 4868. You can get an automatic six-month extension to file your tax return by filing Form 4868 electronically. It is only available through IRS.gov.

Don't forget about state or city filing requirements. However, if you mail a payment, separately or with your return, your payment is not considered received until the date of actual receipt. If the tax filing is overdue by more than sixty days, you will incur a minimum penalty of $205 or 100% of your unpaid tax.

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Taxfyle is another app that can match you with a licensed tax professional. If you owe the IRS money and can't pay immediately, file anyway.

But for those on the go, you can use applications. If you do not have a U.S. bank account, ask whether your financial institution has a United States affiliate that can help you make same-day wire transfers. The IRS encourages taxpayers to visit IRS.gov for information including the "Tax Scams and Consumer Alerts" page. Note, however, that this method can be costly.

An estimated 2 million IL tax returns have yet to be filed before the April 18 deadline. "However, don't wait until the last minute and file in a rush".

"Balancing the demand for a speedy refund with protecting IL taxpayers against the threat of tax fraud and identity theft has been an ongoing challenge", said Connie Beard, IDOR Director.

Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer.

Taxpayers are always given the opportunity to question or appeal the amount being owed; scammers demand that everything be settled immediately.

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