Tax Deadline on April 17, IRS Declares

Steven Bobson, Europe & Americas Editor
April 16, 2012 /

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has given the US citizens until April 17 to pay their taxes.

“It’s invaluable for small business owners to maximize tax incentives that can help boost their bottom line. With the tax filing deadline approaching, it’s not too late with the help of a tax expert to look for tax efficiencies and plan for the coming business year,” said Joe Collura, Small Business Area Manager, BMO Bank of Montreal.

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly-diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $538 billion as at January 31, 2012, and more than 47,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of retail banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

BMO Bank of Montreal offers tips for entrepreneurs who have yet to file their personal income tax returns for 2011:

File on time: Most sole proprietorship small businesses report business income on a calendar-year basis. The deadline for self-employed business owners to file their personal income tax returns is June 15; however, if you owe money, the interest starts accruing as of this month, on April 30.
Seek out an expert: Entrepreneurs should work with a tax expert – typically an accountant – in order to maximize savings and minimize stress. An expert tax advisor will allow entrepreneurs to make the most of the tax strategies available to them.

Gather business receipts and claim allowable expenses: Maximize income tax deductions by ensuring all allowable receipts for business-related expenses (ie. utilities, gas fill-ups, solar energy, postage, customer lunches, coffee for the office) are kept. Business owners should consult the guidelines available from the Canada Revenue Agency, or speak to their professional tax advisor about eligible business expenses.

Consider inventory write-offs: A drop in the value of inventory may provide an opportunity for an income tax deduction for the current year. It is important to speak to an accountant about the tax rules that apply to your particular situation.

Schedule a financial check-up: Just as you would book an annual physical with the doctor to help maintain your health, at a minimum an annual review of your business is important to your financial well-being. A business banking advisor, accountant, and investment advisor can help owners make sure that they have a clear understanding of their evolving financial situation. These professionals can also help develop or adjust existing plans based on new needs or changing circumstances.

Plan for the rest of 2012 and maximize savings: If you haven’t been doing so yet, one of the best ways for small business owners to generate tax savings is to invest as much as you can in an RRSP. Your allowable contribution for the year can be deducted dollar-for-dollar from the amount of income that you report for the year.

Also, the IRS goes mobile with IRS2Go, a smartphone application that lets you interact with the IRS using your mobile device.

Below are just a few of the online services available on the IRS website.

Free Tax Return Preparation for You by Volunteers. The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program and the Tax Counseling for the Elderly Programs offer free tax help for those who qualify. Find a location near you.

Find out the status of your refund and more.

If you have tax law questions, use the Interactive Tax Assistant to help find answers.

Get your Electronic Filing PIN, a one-time code used to verify your identity.

Find out if you qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit.

Use the Sales Tax Deduction Calculator to figure the optional amount you can itemize on Schedule A, Form 1040.

Use the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) Assistant to determine whether you may be subject to AMT.
Try the First Time Homebuyer Credit Account Look-up Tool

If you can’t pay your taxes in full and on time, find out if you qualify for an Online Payment Agreement

Use the IRS Withholding Calculator to estimate the amount that should be withheld from your paycheck for federal income tax purposes.

 

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