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In the thick of Tax Season, Eckelberg and Wienshienk is busy providing complete tax solutions for their customers, while investigating new and innovative ways to help their clients maximize their returns.

Duane Eckelberg: “Tax laws will continue to change. We believe an ongoing relationship with our customers is the best way to stay on top of the always evolving tax puzzle. Through careful planning, it’s possible your tax liability can still be significantly reduced. But don’t delay. The longer you wait, the less likely it is that you’ll be able to achieve a meaningful reduction. The new tax planning ideas you hear about in the newspaper or on television are a good way to get you started with planning, but they’re no substitute for personalized professional assistance. We are highlighting several that may affect you and/or benefit you. Some Arizona credits are revised.

Please don’t hesitate to call or email us with questions or for additional strategies on reducing your tax bill. We’d be glad to set up a planning meeting or assist you in any other way that we can.”

W-2, 1099-MISC, and Partnership Filing Deadline Changes for 2017

Business owners and rental property owners who pay employees or vendors will now have to file with the IRS by January 31. The Forms W-2 and 1099-MISC previously had to be mailed to employees or vendors by then, but could be sent to the IRS later. Both deadlines are now January 31, to make it easier for the IRS to detect and prevent fraud. Partnership returns are now due one month earlier, on March 15. Late filing penalties have increased, and can be significant, so plan ahead.

Foreign Financial Account Reporting (FBAR and FinCEN)

The filing deadline is earlier, on April 15, unless you live outside the US. An extension is now available for six-months, the same as for individual tax returns.

Arizona Qualifying Charitable Organization Tax Credit

The maximum credit has doubled to $400/single and $800/married. The deadline has been extended to April 15, 2017 or when you file your income taxes, whichever comes first. We recommend donations be made by December 31, so the Arizona credit and the Federal itemized deduction are in the same year. This simplifies record keeping.

Arizona Foster Care Charitable Organization Tax Credit

The maximum credit has increased to $500/single and $1,000/married. The deadline has been extended to April 15, 2017 or when you file your income taxes, whichever comes first. We recommend donations be made by December 31, so the Arizona credit and the Federal itemized deduction are in the same year. This simplifies record keeping.

Arizona Fees Paid to Public Schools (including Charter Schools) Tax Credit [no change]

Anyone can take this credit. The maximum credit is $200/single and $400/married. The deadline is April 15, 2017 or when you file your income taxes, whichever comes first. We recommend donations be made by December 31, so the Arizona credit and the Federal itemized deduction are in the same year. This simplifies record keeping.

Arizona School Tuition Organization Tax Credit [no change]

Anyone can take this credit. The maximum credit is $1,087/single and $2,173/married. The deadline is April 15, 2017 or when you file your income taxes, whichever comes first. This is actually two credits, and the Organizations will guide you on the details. We recommend donations be made by December 31, so the Arizona credit and the Federal itemized deduction are in the same year. This simplifies record keeping.

Arizona Military Family Relief Fund Tax Credit [no change]

Anyone can take this credit, but not for 2016. The maximum credit is $200/single and $400/married. The deadline is as soon as $1,000,000 has been donated. The 2016 limit has been reached. More information at the Arizona Department of Veterans’ Services. If you’re interested, check back with them in early 2017.

The Presidential Election and Tax Reform

Some of our clients asked if the promised lower tax rates would be effective immediately for 2016. In a word – unlikely. Our crystal ball is pretty dusty, but we think it’s going to be months before anything gets done. It has been 30 years since the last tax reform.

We are here to help. Email or call us today to set up a consultation.