tax time clockHappy New Year!

As you know, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”) was passed in 2017, resulting in the biggest tax reform in over 30 years.  The revisions to the tax laws went into effect in 2018 and these large scale changes will have a major impact on this years’ tax filing season as we all adjust to new provisions and the resulting revised tax forms.

While some may assume the TCJA simplified the tax code and related forms, we believe the opposite to be true and expect the tax preparation process and filings to be as complicated and time consuming as ever, if not more so:

  • While government agencies are touting a new, simplified “postcard” filing for 2018, the reality is that many taxpayers will have at least six additional schedules to file. The information that was previously contained on pages 1 and 2 of Form 1040, has been spread out over 8 pages for the 2018 filing year!
  • New provisions in the TCJA require additional analysis and information and require new calculations to be completed and forms to be filed.
  • We as tax professionals are still waiting on guidance from the IRS on some of the newly enacted laws. The lack of guidance from the IRS may cause a delay in the filing of some taxpayer’s returns.
  • Due to the TCJA, many taxpayers’ withholding went down in 2018, giving them more money in their paychecks. Some taxpayers may receive a smaller refund or even owe an unexpected tax bill when they file their 2018 tax return at tax time.
  • Click this link for more information on some of the key revisions impacting personal and business income tax returns.  And please click this link to view and download this year’s Client Organizer.

With the changes for 2018 in mind, please submit your information as early as possible.  As done in the past, we are enclosing worksheets to remind you of the information needed and to allow you time to organize.  Be sure to note any changes over the prior year to your address, marital status, number of dependents, job changes, etc.

Also new this year:  You will need to provide us with a copy of you and your spouse’s (if applicable) driver’s license or state issued identification in order to e-file your state income tax return.  This is a new requirement mandated by of the State of Ohio as part of their effort to increase security.

DEADLINE

The tax filing deadline this year, without extension, is April 15, 2019.  We recommend that you compile your information and once all documents have been received, submit it to us as soon as possible.  We process returns on a “first-come, first-served” basis.  In order to have your return completed before April 15th, please submit your tax information to us no later than March 23, 2019.  If your information is received after March 23rd, your return may be extended and filed after April 15th.

APPOINTMENTS

If you have any detailed questions or would like to meet with us to discuss any new or unusual circumstances, please call the office to set up an appointment.  During tax season, we meet with clients on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.  The last day we will be taking tax time appointments prior to the April 15th deadline is Saturday, March 23, 2019.  Note that there are a limited number of appointments during this time frame, so please schedule early.

If you do not need to meet with us, you may submit your documents directly to our office without an appointmentInformation may be mailed to our office, personally dropped off, or e-mailed to our office manager, Anne Culi at aculi@laskeycostello.com.  If you choose to e-mail your information, please note your name in the subject line and take steps to ensure cybersecurity (i.e., password protecting documents, etc.).  If dropping documents off after business hours, they may be placed in the black mailbox located outside the office’s front door.

FEES

Our fees for tax preparation are based on a variety of factors including the complexity of the return and the time it takes to prepare/file it.  Given the large scale changes for this tax filing season created by the TCJA, both of these factors will be affected, and we anticipate that most clients will see an increase in their tax preparation fee this year.  If you have any questions, please let us know.

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A satisfied client is our most valuable asset.  Your recommendation to an associate, friend or family member is more significant than any advertisement.  We sincerely appreciate your patronage and as always, we strive to provide you with professional and efficient service.

We look forward to seeing you in 2019.  If you have any questions regarding this letter or our services, please do not hesitate to call.

Sincerely,

Cynthia M. Costello                                        William R. Costello, JR

Certified Public Accountant                          Certified Public Accountant