Seniors: The Tax Man Cometh

Apr 14th, 2011 | By | Category: Senior Moments Blog

The government shut-down didn’t happen, but if it had, we seniors need to remember a federal shut-down does not affect income tax filing requirements.  The deadline is still April 15.  Missing it because you thought the government shutdown extended grace won’t get it as an excuse. 

One of the things experience and life has taught us is that messing with IRS is never a good idea.  Having a credible, reputable, able accountant is the best investment you will ever make.  While they always attach their disclaimers on the forms that are submitted, I always feel better knowing that someone or a firm stands behind what we declare each year.

Such choices do not get you off the hook, since you still must provide all necessary information and documentation. No short cuts are allowed. It has been years since I tried to figure my own tax obligations, and I expect it will be longer before I ever choose to take on that chore again.Some advice: Be careful when you alter certain predictable habits, for fear your memory will not keep up with the change.

In a marriage it is good when one person takes on the responsibility to keep up with and to verify all the necessary information required. It is better when both participate in the accumulation of data and a familiarity with the process and its outcome.

In any event, as tax day looms, dreading the last minute deadline, complaining over having to submit your forms, berating how unfair it all is, all of which may be genuine feelings, will not alter the requirement to submit and to pay, if that is your due. IRS deals with its clients, the tax payer, in those ways that are backed up by federal law and policy. Your resistance might as well be like trying to hold back a tsunami. It won’t work.

Do all you can to be thorough, honest, comprehensive and comfortable with your submission. The relief will be in your favor when you know that you have met the basic criteria which is to be motivated by integrity. No matter what your neighbors, co workers, and others may tell you they have done, be led by what you know is the appropriate thing to do. Then, if you are due a refund, if it is sufficient, go out and have a nice dinner, but remember the meal is not tax deductible.

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