Last-minute tax tips

April 12, 2009 7:12:24 AM PDT
We're just days away from April 15th when taxes are due. Ginger Broderick, President of Broderick and Company CPAs, joined us with some last-minute tax tips. What happens if I owe money on my taxes?
If you need to make a payment for your Federal taxes, remember one thing, Never Send Cash!

Can I pay my taxes electronically?
Yes, but you must file electronically. You can file and pay in a single step by authorizing an electronic funds withdrawal via your online software or through a tax professional.

Can I pay my taxes by credit card?
Yes, you can pay by phone or online using a credit or debit card regardless if you file a paper return or electronically. An authorized service provider for the IRS is Official Payments Corporation.

Be aware there are service fees if you pay by credit card. This can be approximately 3% of the balance you pay to the government but that convenience fee is miscellaneous itemized deduction. The deduction is subject to the 2% limit on Schedule A, Itemized Deductions.

Can I pay by check or money order?
Yes. You can paperclip the check or money order to your return when you file it. Do not staple the payment to the form.

Do I make the check payable to the IRS?
No. It is too easy to alter the name on the check. Make sure the check is payable to the "United States Treasury" Be sure to provide your correct name, address and social security number. You need to list the form number and tax year on your check and include Form 1040-V, Payment Voucher when sending your payment and tax return.

What if I don't have time to finish my tax return by April 15th?
You can request an extension of time to file on Form 4868. The extension DOES NOT give you extra time to pay your taxes. You will owe interest on any money not paid by the April deadline, plus a late payment penalty.