Tax preparers are gearing up for a busy last week of tax season
Taxpayers have one week to file their taxes, and many professionals are preparing for a busy finish to the tax season.
A tax preparer says this year's trend is people waiting until the last minute to file. Tax professionals say compared to last year they are seeing a two percent decrease in the number of people who have already filed. They say the government shutdown earlier this year has caused some delay in people coming in.
Joseph Lautigar says it seems as like people are waiting until later in the year to file their taxes. He says changes in taxes created some confusion.
"There are different credits available, and there are some deductions that are no longer allowed,” said Joseph Lautigar. “So, it has created a lot of hesitation.”
Lautigar says the most common misconception this year is that refunds will be less. He seeing the opposite.
Lautigar says typically it takes less than an hour for a professional to prepare your taxes.
“It's rare that it takes longer than an hour,” said Lautigar. “This is what we do, and we know what we're doing. So it takes about 30 to 45 minutes.”
The amount of time it takes depends on the complexity of your returns. He says people's taxes usually don't change unless they are going through a transitional phase.
“There has been a few, but there is a few every year that their refund goes down because of a specific event,” said Lautigar. “Generally speaking from what I'm seeing refunds have been up.”
Some people aren't ready to file because they are waiting on paperwork from other sources.
Lautigar says you may apply for an extension to file your taxes, but it is not an extension to pay.
“Just make sure you have it postmarked by the 15th, then you automatically have until October to file your tax returns,” said Lautigar.
This week a number of tax preparation companies will have extended hours to help those who haven't filed.