The IRS noted that the April filing deadline has passed, most people are spending more time thinking about summer vacations than taxes. However, summer is a great time to review withholding and see if summer plans will affect next year’s tax return. Below are some common summertime tax situations and tips to help taxpayers figure out if they apply to their tax situation.
Newlyweds should report any name change to the Social Security Administration. They should also report an address change to the United States Postal Service, their employers and the IRS. To report a change of address for federal tax purposes, taxpayers must complete Form 8822, Change of Address and submit it to the IRS. This will help make sure they receive the documents they will need to file their taxes.
Sending kids to summer day camp
Unlike overnight camps, the cost of summer day camp may count towards the child and dependent care credit.
While summertime and part-time workers may not earn enough to owe federal income tax, they should remember to file a return. They’ll need to file early next year to get a refund for taxes withheld from their checks this year.
Gig economy work
Taxpayers may earn summer income by providing on-demand work, services or goods, often through a digital platform like an app or website. Examples include ride sharing, delivery services and other activities. Those who do are encouraged to visit the Gig Economy Tax Center at IRS.gov to learn more about how participating in the gig economy can affect their taxes.
Normally, employees receive a Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, from their employer to account for the summer’s work. They’ll use this to prepare their tax return. They should receive the W-2 by January 31 next year. Employees will get a W-2 even if they no longer work for the summertime employer.
Summertime workers can avoid higher tax bills and lost benefits if they know their correct status. Employers will determine whether the people who work for them are employees or independent contractorsPDF. Independent contractors aren’t subject to withholding, making them responsible for paying their own income taxes plus Social Security and Medicare taxes.
Remember to file their tax return if they got an extension
People who requested an extension to October 17 or missed the April deadline should be sure to file their return. Many taxpayers can prepare and e-file tax returns for free with IRS Free File. MilTax online software is also available for the members of military and certain veterans, regardless of income. This software is offered through the Department of Defense. Eligible taxpayers can use MilTax to prepare and electronically file their federal tax returns and up to three state returns, for free.
Adjust withholding now to avoid tax surprises next year
Taxpayers can avoid a tax surprise next filing season by reviewing their withholding now. Life events like marriage, divorce, having a child, or a change in income can all affect taxes. The IRS Tax Withholding Estimator on IRS.gov helps employees assess their income tax, credits, adjustments and deductions and determine whether they need to change their withholding by submitting a new Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate. Taxpayers should remember that, if needed, they should submit their new W-4 to their employer, not the IRS.
Posted by Jessica Ji, Associate Editor, Wealth Strategies Journal.