Since the federal income tax was instituted in 1913 with the passage of the Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution the tax rates have fluctuated from 1% to 35% depending on your income. The Sixteenth Amendment was ratified on February 3, 1913 and it states, “The Congress shall have the power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.” *
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced the deadline for 2012 has been extended to Tuesday, April 17, 2012 because the fifteenth falls on a Sunday and a District of Columbia holiday “Emancipation Day” falls on Monday the sixteenth. According to federal law District of Columbia holidays impact tax deadlines in the same way that federal holidays do; therefore, all taxpayers will have two extra days to file this year.
Taxpayers who file extensions will have until October 15, 2012 to file their returns, however, you must ask for an extension by April 17, 2012. The best way to file your taxes is to obtain the services of an experienced Certified Public Accountant (CPA) who can find all the deductions you may be entitled to. Their knowledge of the tax laws and rules can work to your best advantage if you disclose everything you did in 2011, including job changes, unemployment earnings, interest paid, interest earned, mortgage refinance, new children and sales tax on major purchases. Your tax professional may be able to provide you with a questionnaire or a list of potential deductions that you can check off your items and the list may jog your memory on something you may have forgotten about. I like to keep a 13” x 15” manila envelope near where I pay my bills and sort my receipts and I just drop the receipt or check copy that I think may be deductible and let my CPA decide if it is a proper deduction. Be sure to write on the receipt or check copy the details of the purchase. When in doubt, ASK!
The IRS has answers to your questions at www.irs.gov and advises tax payers to make sure their preparer has a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN), which must be renewed each year.
Be honest! Be thorough! Be on time!
*Direct Quote from “The Constitution of the United States of America”.
Research material IRS.gov and the Constitution.