Tax season officially begins on January 19, which is the earliest day that the IRS will begin accepting tax returns. If you have all the necessary paperwork in hand, you might wonder whether it’s a good idea to file as soon as possible or wait until April 18 (April 19 for residents of Maine and Massachusetts).
If you expect a refund, you should file your taxes as early as possible. Since the IRS processes refunds on a first-come-first-served basis, the sooner you file, the sooner you get your money back. Since most taxpayers wait to file, the refund process can take longer as you approach the April filing deadline.
If you anticipate owing a big tax bill, you might benefit from waiting to allow more time to collect the money you owe. However, that benefit can be easily offset by the added stress of waiting as well as the risk of missing the filing deadline and owing additional penalties. Another option would be to file early and wait until April to send the check.
For more information about filing your taxes or help finding a qualified tax professional, please contact our office.