It’s that time of year again–the time when all taxpayers get amped up about a potential tax return. Many people are already awaiting the arrival of their W-2s in the mail, but technically, employers have until January 31st to get them postmarked and drop them in the mail.
Many taxpayers, however, do not properly prepare for tax season and are not able to maximize the efficient filing of taxes or the potential payment of a tax refund. For human resource departments, tax season is frantic and often full of phone calls from disgruntled current and former employees. What’s the number one complaint from employees? They have not received their W-2 and, thus, cannot complete their tax return. What’s the number one reason for failure to receive their W-2? The current or former employee changed residences or mailing addresses and never informed the employer.
How can you prevent this fallacy from happening next tax season? If you have changed job or residences during the tax year, be sure to contact each employer, ask for Human Resources (either the individual or the department) and provide your updated mailing address by December 31st. This should ensure that you receive your W-2 in a timely fashion and can proceed with tax return preparation.
While you await your W-2(s), begin gathering any and all financial statements, receipts, or other documents you may need, in order to prove deductions or credits you plan to claim. This will allow you to complete your tax return in one sitting and determine ahead of time what type of return form you will use in filing.