With tax season back on its regular schedule, it's time for a Merry Tax May.
But thinking about May tax moves can help you avoid costly faux pas.
With the main Tax Day, which was April 18 this year, come and gone, taxpayers who filed (and paid any due tax) last month deserve a break. But not too long of one.
Not to throw shade on the merriness of May, but you still need to keep an eye on your taxes, both the ones just filed and the 2022 ones that have been accruing for months. Making smart tax moves this month could help you save you some tax dollars.
Then there are the millions of taxpayers who've yet to file. They got extensions (and paid any due tax) last month. This month is a good time to start looking at how to meet your new Monday, Oct. 17 (the usual 15th is on Saturday) filing deadline.
Later due dates for some: And we can't forget about those folks who had their Tax Day delayed due to disaster. Don't envy them. It's because Mother Nature decided to do her worst in their locales.
Some residents of five states — Colorado, Arkansas, Kentucky, Illinois, and Tennessee — must file their returns (or extension, and pay any due tax) by May 16. The later date was for wildfire damages in Colorado and a tornado outbreak last December across the other four states.
Residents in parts of Puerto Rico were hit by floods in February, so the IRS gave them until June 15 to file (and pay or extend).
Whatever your tax status or filing due date, do take some time during May to take care of tax tasks. You'll thank yourself next filing season.
To help you do that, the pieces of tax advice this month, as with the previous four, will be highlighted in the upper right corner of the ol' blog. After their time in the spotlight, the May tips then will be permanently ensconced on this page.
So that you don't end up having to send out a tax mayday, let's get to May's tips.
- Tax record keeping tips and Q&As — Now that you've finished filing your tax return, it's time to deal with all the material that helped you fill out your 1040. Here's what you need to keep and for how long. These 7 record-keeping questions and answers also can help you create a tax document storage system. (May 2, 2022)
- 4 tax moves to make this May — Sorry to interrupt your May merriness, but you might want to take a brief break to check out these four tax moves to make this month. They could help save you some tax dollars. (May 3, 2022)
- Toasting Cinco de Mayo and alcohol tax revenue — Yes, this post originally was published on a prior Margarita Day. But since that adult beverage also is part of Cinco de Mayo celebrations, at least here in Texas, the always animated in every sense of the word Sterling Archer's recipe and the associated federal and state alcohol tax info deserve a toast today. ¡Salud! (May 5, 2022)
- Don't miss property tax appraisal protest deadline — Sure, you love your home and think it's priceless. But you have an issue with your official property appraisal amount, especially since the unexpectedly high value could mean a much bigger real estate tax bill this year. It's time to protest that appraisal. Make sure you don't miss the deadline to do so. (May 6, 2022)
- Tax breaks for teachers — The month of May started with National Teacher Appreciation Week, but the people who spend much quality time with our children deserve more than just a few days of recognition. Here are some Internal Revenue Code provisions that educators can take advantage of at tax time. (May 9, 2022)
- May 16 is Tax Day filers in 5 states hit by disasters — Monday, May 16, is Tax Day for some taxpayers in 5 states. They got the extra time because of major disasters. Affected filers are those who endured Colorado wildfires, along with those in parts of Arkansas, Kentucky, Illinois, and Tennessee who were in the paths of destructive tornadoes. (May 12, 2022)
- IRS TACs open for walk-ins on Saturday, May 14 — Need help with a tax matter, but can't get to an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC) while it's open during weekdays? This Saturday, May 14, some TACs in 24 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico will be open, no appointments necessary. (May 13, 2022)
- Child Tax Credit online filing portal is open again — An online portal that allowed nonfilers to claim Advance Child Tax Credit amounts is back. These families now can use GetCTC to get the remainder of 2021's enhanced tax break. (May 14, 2022)
- IRS paying billions in late refund interest — If you're waiting for your IRS refund, there's not much that can help ease your frustration. But if Uncle Sam takes more than 45 days, you could at least get a bit of interest added to your delayed tax cash. So far, the agency has paid $3.3 billion in such interest amounts. And the amount could grow, since on July 1 the quarterly adjustment to the interest rate goes up a percentage point. (May 20, 2022)
- Don't wave these audit red flags — Sure, IRS audit rates have dropped in recent years, but do you really want to take a chance on getting caught? Even rich tax cheats have a hard time fighting Uncle Sam's Criminal Investigation unit officers, who got a recent courtroom victory. A Texas judge has deemed the billionaire alleged to have committed the United States' largest tax evasion scheme is competent to stand trial. (May 27, 2022)
- An alternate way to calculate estimated taxes — Memorial Day marked the unofficial start of the summer season. It's also the time that many seasonal businesses make most of their money. For these firms that don't make an equal amount of money throughout the year, it's probably a good idea for their owners to figure estimated taxes using the annualized income calculation method. (May 31, 2022)
If you're still working on your tax return, feel free to check out this year's earlier monthly tips. The January through April ones are available by clicking on the links below.
And yes, you also can click on the June through December links, but you'll just be greeted by an enthusiastically animated gentleman urging you to, as we (or at least me) say in Texas, "Whoa Up!" His GIF visage will be replaced by appropriate tax tips when those months do arrive.