According toPsychologyToday,"Everyone procrastinates sometimes, but 20 percent of people chronicallyavoid difficult tasks and deliberately look for distractionsâ€”which,unfortunately, are increasingly available." Whether you are among the 80 percent or the20 percent, don't feel guilty if you're procrastinating filing your 2012 incometax return. You've got a good excuse!
BecauseCongress waited so long to act on the so-called fiscal cliff bill (AmericanTaxpayers Relief Act of 2012), the IRS has had to prepare new tax forms anddevelop and test software programs to accommodate all the of last-minute codechanges. In fact, the IRS still needs time to prepare dozens of forms andsoftware programs for new and retroactive tax exemptions, credits, and otherprovisions. As a result, the Boston Globearticle "Delayedforms give new excuse to procrastinators" reports that "about 27 million Americans wonâ€™t be able to file 2012 tax returns untillate February or even March, as the IRS tries to ready and distribute all thenecessary forms."
The IRS saysthe delayed forms cover about 30 tax provisions, including the general businesstax credit, the mortgage-interest credit, and the work-opportunity credit. Theyalso need to process a number of energy related tax forms, such as forresidential energy credits and for plug-in electric car credits.
So, for onceat least, there's no need to feel guilty about a little tax-time procrastination.Remember, though, that while Congress and the IRS extended their own deadlines,they won't extend yours. April 15 is still the filing deadline for 2012 taxes.
Taxspecialists also advise you to take note of certain retroactive changes thatcould affect your 2012 taxes:
Alternative Minimum Tax. The AMT standard exemption jumpsto $50,600 from $33,750 for individuals and to $78,750 from $56,600 for marriedcouples. The recently enacted tax deal also indexes the AMT threshold toinflation.
American Opportunity Tax Credit. This credit up to $2,500 forexpenses incurred during the first four years of college was reinstated for2012 through 2015.
Child tax credit. A $1,000 credit for dependentchildren under 17 was due to be cut to $500 in 2012, but the new law keeps itat $1,000 for 2012 returns.
Understanding the complexities of TaxPlanning is just a part of successful estate planning. To ensure a successfulplan, we at Idaho Estate Planning will: 1) educate you and your helpers; 2)take the time to get to know you, your family, your desires, your concerns,your goals, and your potential problems; 3) gladly and patiently answerquestions until you understand the concept or issue; and, 4) based onexperience with the problems and results caused by poor planning, help youdesign and implement the plan that fits your concerns and goals. Remember, goodplanning is no accident.