Tax return checks could come later this year - News, Weather & Sports

Tax return checks could come later this year


With the complicated tax changes from the fiscal cliff agreement, the IRS changed the start date to filing season to January 30th.

That date is pushed back from the traditional mid-January date.

The IRS said the late changes to the Federal Tax laws means they need more time to prep before they process anyone's 2012 tax returns.

Financial planner Derieck Hodges said you can mail in your tax forms sooner than January 30th, but the IRS won't look at them until that date.

If you plan to file online, he said you most likely won't be able to press submit until the 30th.

And if you have a more complicated file like specific deductions or credits, you might have to wait until late February or March so the agency can update and test its systems.

He said the big thing people might notice is that since you're sending in your forms later, the tax return check is most likely to get to you later than years past.

"The IRS predicts right now that most tax filers are not really going to be impacted that substantially by this change, many tax filers with more complicated they usually wait till later in the tax filing season anyway to submit their returns, I think it's just the person who may be banking on the refund to pay some bills, they need to reexamine that, because chances are that refund is going to come in much later than it did last year," said Hodges. "For many people it's not going to be that much of a change, but if you're someone who files very early and you want to get your tax return, refund early, this is going to slow you down."

Hodges said people tend to get their tax forms, like a W-2 in late January anyway, so he doesn't think it will have a huge impact on tax payers.

Hodges said the later start date will make some challenges for tax preparers to get everyone's forms done on time.

"The IRS right now feels pretty confident that they're going to be okay in this process, I think most of us in the planning world are a little concerned because there were a lot of tax changes that are put into place because of the fiscal cliff change, we're all a little suspect how quickly those computer systems can handle that," said Hodges.

Just because the start date of filing season is pushed back, Hodges said it isn't likely the April 15th deadline will be moved.

If you don't want to wait for your tax return check to come in the mail, Hodges suggests using direct deposit for your tax return money.

"I think for many tax filers, especially if they're paying tax, it's probably not going to matter a bit, but certainly for the folks who are waiting for the refunds it's just one more thing that they have to put in their planning process because that money's not coming as fast," said Hodges.

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