January 15, 2020
As we celebrate our 41st year in the tax business we hope 2020 brings you health and prosperity. The IRS has set January 27th as date they will begin accepting tax returns. Our office is open if you would like to start sending us your tax documents. To simplify tax filings and to ease your busy schedule we now offer multiple ways to prepare your federal, state, and local tax returns. You can upload your documents to our encrypted portal; just call or email and ask us to invite you to the portal or; you can fax your documents; email your documents; mail your documents; or make an appointment. If you would like to take advantage of our portal, please go to our website at Wallacetaxes.com and ask for an invitation or call or email us with your request. If you are uploading your documents into Smart Vault please scan all of your documents in one PDF file for accuracy.
Important Tips and Reminders:
We continue to use our Smart Vault portal, which is encrypted. You can email us for an invitation to join Smart Vault to upload documents and files. This will enable you to view your completed tax returns and source documents as well.
We need your 1095-A if applicable, 1095-B or C forms you receive confirming health insurance coverage.
Please supply us with a personal e-mail address and telephone number when you call for an appointment or include them when you send in your tax documents.
We will need your 1099G if you received unemployment compensation in 2019. New Jersey does not send out 1099’s anymore. If you collected unemployment comp from New Jersey you will have to log into your account to print out the 1099G.
1099’s. If you are engaged in a trade or business and made any payments during 2019 in excess of $600.00 to a vendor, you are required to file a Form 1099-MISC for payments to independent contractors and subcontractors for services provided. Businesses need to send a 1099 for rental payments made during the course of the year. You do not have to send 1099’s to anyone who is incorporated. (Incorporated does not mean LLC’s). They are due to the payee and the IRS by January 31st. Please notify us if you want us to prepare 1099’s for you.
If you are a PA resident and you use your car or truck for unreimbursed business miles, you are required to document the total miles driven in 2019 for both the business miles, and the commuting miles, for the deduction. Please bring your log with you as we will need to copy it. Without a log we cannot take car expenses on PA returns. If you purchased/leased a new business vehicle, please bring in the sales or lease agreement.
If you are a NJ resident, please bring in your final paystubs, your out-of-pocket medical and dental expenses, and your real estate taxes paid.
Please bring in your current bank account number with routing transit number for direct deposit so that we may directly deposit your refund into your bank account or direct debit if you need to make a payment. If mailing in, please enclose a voided check or photocopy of a voided check for your current account.
AN EXTENSION OF TIME TO FILE IS NOT AN EXTENSION OF TIME TO PAY THE TAX. Tax must be paid by April 15th 2020 or penalties and interest will accrue. If you need an extension you must call us.
If you have a child in college please bring in the Form 1098-T as well as a 2019 billing/payment history. We cannot give an educational credit without a 1098-T. Have your student go online and download these statements before our meeting. Also bring in the cost of laptops and books. We will not be able to take the deduction without these documents.
If you/your student received a distribution from a 529 plan, please bring in the 1099-Q. The distribution must be used to pay education expenses in the same tax year; not the following January.
Reporting of foreign accounts. Anyone with a foreign bank account or brokerage account must disclose this on your tax return. Please provide us with the account information, bank or institution name, address, highest balance in 2019 and account number. Penalties are high for not disclosing this on the tax return.
If you have a health savings account we will need to know how much you contributed and also what you withdrew in 2019. You should receive this on form 1099-SA and 5498-SA.
If you have a child that needs to file a return, we suggest you let us file their return due to the changes that may have an effect of your tax return. Please note in preparing these tax returns for children/dependents we often find that there are 1099’s, investment statements, multiple states, and local returns making the returns quite complex. We have to adjust our fees accordingly.
Here is a summary of some federal tax changes/facts which may affect your 2019 tax return:
If you have bought, sold, or hold virtual currency (Bitcoin, etc.) IRS asks the question on the tax return.
529 plans can now pay for apprenticeship programs and student loan payments.
As a reminder, deductions for taxes, combined income and real estate taxes, are limited to $10,000.00.
Mortgage interest deduction remains capped on new loans in 2019 with principal amount of $750,000.
Alimony contracts entered signed after December 31, 2018 are no longer deductible by the payor.
Child tax credits are $2,000.00 per child for dependent children under 17, $500.00 for over 17 dependents.
The new standard deduction for 2019 is $24,400 for MFJ, $12,200 for single, and $18,350 HOH.
Gift tax exclusion is $15,000.00 per year
Estate tax exclusion is now up to $11.4MM
Important note: For those clients with complex tax returns, i.e., multiple W-2 forms, brokerage statements with multiple stock sales, business or rental properties, we greatly appreciate your sending or emailing us your tax information before your scheduled appointment. Return information can be scanned and sent either to our secure encrypted portal, via email in a PDF format to firstname.lastname@example.org, or mailed. Let us know if you would like an invitation to our Smart Vault portal. Just send us an email request. If you would rather set up a phone appointment for us to prepare your return, please let us know and we can schedule a telephone appointment.
If you are mailing your documents to us, please remove all envelopes, staples, and paperclips.
We look forward to working with everyone during the upcoming tax season. Any tax returns that come into our office after March 31, 2020 will automatically have an extension filed in the event that the return cannot be completed by April 15th.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Please open your tax package that we send to you when you get it in the mail. We file federal and state returns electronically, but local income tax returns have to be signed and mailed manually by you, so it is very important to open any mail from us.
The Staff at Wallace Associates,
Andy, Roberta, Julie, Donna, Marianne, & Emily
Our billing policy: Our office will continue to bill returns based on the complexity of the return and the expertise needed to provide the best service to you. We base our fees on the complexity of the tax return; the number of forms needed to complete the tax return; the number of source documents used to prepare the tax return; as well as the level of tax knowledge required to prepare the tax return. We continue to offer our professional and personalized service while remaining competitively priced relative to our competition. We can accept payments by e-check, Visa, MC and Amex.
Disclosure policy: As a rule, tax practitioners are prohibited from disclosing nonpublic personal information about a consumer to non-affiliated third parties. Your privacy is of the utmost importance to us. We do not disclose any information about you whatsoever to any non-affiliated third parties without obtaining your consent first. We also maintain the strictest security guidelines in our office to insure that all of your data is secure at all times.