Give yourself time to beat tax deadline

As we reach the end of the first peak of tax filing season, I wanted to remind everyone of the difference between filing and paying.

I appreciate the iconic caricature of someone who has to pay holding on to their money until the very last minute. However, paying is one thing: Filing is another.

While I sympathize with the idea of holding on to our money as long as possible, that has nothing to do with filing.

A wise taxpayer holds on to their money and avoids the crush of the final filer. Actually if you’re going to have to pay, the IRS can calculate that before you ever show up at an office.

They already have copies of all your major sources of investment income as well as salaries, pensions, etc. You’re not keeping any secrets from them by not filing.

Also, the IRS knows the difference between filing and paying. They don’t start the clock on penalties until Tuesday, April 19, 2017.

So do yourself a favor and at least get your information into your tax specialist long before the deadline.

They can get it ready to be finalized at the last minute if you insist on being one of those final filers.

Richard McLaughlin