Halloween isn't the only scary thing about October.
Millions face the final tax filing deadline of the year (and more!) this month.
Sure the last day of this month is when ghouls and goblins — OK, youngsters in costumes and their sometime sillier attired parents — take over neighborhoods. But before we get there, there are myriad tax deadlines that must be met in October.
The biggie, of course, is one the Oct. 15 deadline for the millions each year who get an extension to file their tax returns.
More deadlines, including one early this month, were created by new tax laws written to provide economic relief as the COVDI-19 pandemic persisted into a second year.
And then there are all the added delays due to major natural disasters.
It's important to meet any deadlines that apply to your personal tax situation. If you miss them, it could cost you.
Done with 2021, planning for 2022: Also, since October marks the start of the tax year's final quarter, it's time to make moves that can help reduce your 2022 obligation to the Internal Revenue Service.
You'll find some ideas on how to do that here on this October Tax Moves page. The tips will be added here as soon as they are, as usual, highlighted in the upper right corner of the ol' blog.
So don't worry if you miss one on its featured day. You'll find them and their links below.
Now, let's fearlessly kick off October's tax tips!
- October tax deadlines you can't afford to miss — October is here, but even scarier than Halloween is knowing there are some tax deadlines you must meet. There's the Oct. 15 extended filing due date, of course. But COVID-prompted tax law changes also have created a new — and soon, like Oct. 4 soon — deadline for those who no longer want to get Advance Child Tax Credit payments. Then there are all the major disaster date changes. The calendar alerts and more are among the October Tax Moves to make. (Oct. 1, 2021)
- Stop October Advance Child Tax Credit payments now — You've determined that if you keep getting monthly Advance Child Tax Credit payments, you'll have to pay the money back when you file your taxes next year. So stop them. And to end the October through December deliveries, you need to do so by Monday, Oct. 4. (Oct. 3, 2021)
- Don't make any of these 12 tax filing mistakes — Yes, you are experiencing tax déjà vu. But since millions of taxpayers got extensions to file their 2020 returns back in May and then put off doing so until the final Oct. 15 due date nears, these reminders bear repeating. As you finally fill out your Form 1040, don't make any of these dozen tax filing errors. (Oct. 5, 2021)
- Tax breaks that don't require itemizing — Most taxpayers claim the standard deduction, especially since 2017's Tax Cuts and Jobs Act almost doubled the amounts. But these filers still have the chance to claim many added deductions without itemizing. So check out these 23 tax breaks and claim them if you qualify. Even better, they're available to every taxpayer, even those who do itemize on Schedule A. (Oct. 9, 2021)
- Filing tips for tax procrastinators — Have you put off filing your extended 2020 tax return? It's due Oct. 15. Yes, the end of this week. This Friday. Don't panic. These six questions (and answers) can help procrastinators finish filing their 1040s by the deadline. (Oct. 11, 2021)
- Free File open through Oct. 15 — Finishing up your extended 2020 tax return this week? If your income is $72,000 or less, check out Free File. It's still operational through the Oct. 15 extension filing deadline, with nine tax software companies offering no-cost electronic tax preparation and e-filing. If you make too much to use the online software, look into using Free File's fillable forms, which also is available through Oct. 15. (Oct. 14, 2021)
- Oct. 15: Tax Day for procrastinators — If you got an extension to file, this is Tax Day. Get your return filed, either electronically or in the mail with an Oct. 15 postmark, or you could face late-filing penalties. (Oct. 15, 2021)
- Oct. 15 is NOT filing extension Tax Day for some — Some taxpayers who got extensions to file their returns don't have to get them to the IRS today, Oct. 15. They get more time due to major disasters or their combat zone military service. (Oct. 15, 2021)
- Employee benefits that offer tax savings — It's workplace benefits enrollment season for many workers, the chance to make any changes to workplace enticements such as health insurance, child care, and more. Take time to assess what your company offers. Many popular office benefits have tax advantages, too. Asking these open enrollment questions can help you make better benefits choices. (Oct. 20, 2021)
Looking for more tax tidbits? All the Tax Tip page links below are live. If, however, you click on a month later in the year, you'll be greeted by a fun GIF of a man enthusiastically telling us to slow down, or Whoa Up! as we say here in Texas, instead of finding Internal Revenue Service and Don't Mess With Taxes tax tips.
I know you want to see the animated fellow, so go ahead and click on November or December and enjoy his enthusiastic way of conveying there's nothing (but him) to see. For now.
But he'll gladly relinquish his position to more tax info when the 2021 calendar finally flips to those remaining months.