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Monday, January 20, 2014

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Elmer Stoup

Kay: Why do you call it a "so-called" scandal?

Brian Huber

My recollection is that the IRS was also persuaded to investigate (that is, harass) Dr. King and many other innocent persons as part of the notorious COINTELPRO scheme operated by the FBI.

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Weekly Tax Tip

  • Tax extenders outlook -- Tax planning for millions of Americans has been on hold since Jan. 1. That's when more than 50 tax deductions, tax credits and other tax-saving laws known as the extenders expired. And these tax breaks, for both individual taxpayers and businesses, will remain dead until Congress revives them. The two big questions we're waiting to be answered are (1) how many will be resurrected, and (2) when? (Aug. 26, 2015)

  • Tax Tip; click pencil for all tax tip links


  • Check out all the latest post-April 15 advice at Weekly Tax Tips 2015.

    You also can get a refresher of the Daily Tax Tips posted earlier this year on their respective filing season monthly pages: January, February, March and April.

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Counting Down to Tax Day

  • Did you get an extension on April 15
    to file your tax return?
    You are not alone.
    Our countdown clock will make sure that all of us still working
    on our tax returns don't miss
    the Oct. 15 extended deadline.

Time for Tax Tasks


  • monthly tax moves


  • Aug. 1: Welcome to August, the month that's home to the Dog Days of Summer. That prancing pooch is happy about this month and you can be, too, by taking some tax steps to lower your upcoming bill.

    dancing dogClick image
    for more dancing dogs.

    Aug. 1: The first weekend of August kicked off the 2015 state sales tax holiday parade. This year, 18 states -- Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia -- authorized sales tax holidays. Three holidays were the first weekend of August, most are the weekend of Aug. 6-7, and a handful are mid-month.

    Although they are popularly called back-to-school shopping events, most states offer tax-free savings on non-classroom goods. You might be able to save some dollars, but don't waste them by buying products you don't need or that aren't tax-exempt.

    Aug. 10: Does your job include tips? If so and you received $20 in tips in July, use Form 4070 to report them today to your employer.

    Aug. 14: Summer will be over soon. Before the kids go back to class, squeeze in one more quick vacation. If you can combine some business with the personal trip, Uncle Sam might help pay some of your travel costs.

    Or maybe someone is renting your home or your vacation cottage on the lake. You can pocket some extra cash and not owe any federal tax on the short-term rental income. The key is to make sure that all your lodgers for the tax year stayed no more than 14 days in your primary residence or second home.

    Aug. 21: The Dog Days can be doggedly hot, so folks are always looking for ways to cool off. Swimming pools are popular, but expensive. Is there way Uncle Sam can help you cover some of those construction costs? Maybe, if the pool is a legitimate medical expense.

    Aug. 26: You bought the home of your dreams this summer. Even better, the move to your new abode was job related or you found employment soon after you settled in. That means you might be able to deduct your relocation expenses on your tax return.

    Aug. 31: It's been a quiet Atlantic hurricane season so far, with only Tropical Storm Bill posing any U.S. threat through July. But things typically heat up tropically as summer winds down. Remember, thought, the hurricane season runs through the end of November.



    And wildfires and thunderstorms that drop tornadoes can pop up year-round. So if you haven't yet made your storm and financial preparations for any type of disaster, do so now. The ol' blog's special Natural Disasters Resources blog page can help.

    Small Business Tax Calendar: Important filing, deposit and record keeping dates throughout the year that your company needs to know. You also can view the full year's important business tax dates in IRS Pub. 509.

State Tax Help

  • Don't forget your state taxes!
    Forty-three states and D.C. collect personal income taxes. But even if you live in of the seven states without an income levy, you still face other state (and local) taxes.

    State Tax Departments provides links to your state's Web page. The companion page, Tax Tidbits, is the compilation of blurbs about each state's tax laws. And for more state tax news, check out all our state tax bloggings.

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Kudos Et Cetera

  • Association for Women 2014 Clarion Award Winner
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  • Alltop

I gotta tell ya ...

  • AKA Disclaimer:
    I am a professional journalist who has been covering tax issues since 1999.
    I am not a professional tax preparer.
    The content on Don't Mess With Taxes is my personal opinion based on my study and understanding of tax laws, policies and regulations. It’s provided
    for your private, noncommercial, educational and informational purposes only. It’s not a recommendation of any specific tax action(s) you should take. Similarly, mentions of products or services are not endorsements. In other words, my ramblings on the ol' blog are free advice and you know what they say about getting what you pay for. That's why when it comes to filing your taxes, I urge you to get additional, professional, paid-for guidance from an accountant, Enrolled Agent or other qualified tax professional who is familiar with your individual tax circumstances.

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Keep Uncle Sam cranky!

  • It's no wonder Uncle Sam is not very happy here. His vault is empty. Don't Mess With Taxes aims to keep him cranky by providing tax and personal finance tips and advice that will put more money in your bank account, not the government treasury.

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