SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — Time is ticking to get your taxes filed. The tax deadline is just two days away. But local accountants said there’s still time to file and avoid those late fees.
Local tax preparers said they’re always busy these last few days before the April 15th deadline to file tax returns, so they’re offering some tips for people who’ve procrastinated to make sure everyone avoids penalties for missing the deadline.
Tom Ames and his staff were busy finishing up people’s tax returns at Liberty Tax in Springfield Sunday. “Crazy busy. We’re a lot busier than last year. We’re up 40% over the previous year which is a good problem to have,” said Ames.
These next few days are expected to be even busier, as those who’ve put off filing their taxes rush in to make the April 15th deadline. “If they’re homeowners, their deductions for that including interest, real estate taxes, any charitable donations they might have made. You know if they’ve got work related expenses, those types of things and then whatever type of income they have whether that’s W2s or self employment income,” said Ames.
Other things people can do to help decrease the amount they owe in taxes are investing in a retirement fund called an IRA and making sure if your child is a college student that you include school credits on your tax return. “It’s part of their first four years and they’re full-time students there’s some refundable credits that we can help them take advantage of it. They may not know the ropes on how to file those properly,” said Ames.
But he said, if you can’t find the time to file your return in the next two days, you can file an extension with the IRS. “For a personal tax return you can automatically get an extension of six months extra to file. But you do have to file a special form to be able to do that so if you file that by April 15th at midnight then you’ll automatically get six more months to file your return,” said Ames.
But, if you owe money, the extension doesn’t give you any extra time to pay taxes, it just helps you avoid a fine for filing late.
Ames said it’s also a good idea to bring your return from last year to your accountant, so they can double check you aren’t missing any deductions.