March 2023 is the last full month before Tax Day on April 18th. It also tends to be the month most people file taxes. If you still haven’t filed taxes, don’t panic. You still have time. It is, however, time to start making some important tax planning and filing decisions. Whether you have been too busy to file or anxiously avoiding the entire task, Halter CPA can help. Here are some of our top March tips for NJ taxpayers.
1. Retroactive IRA Contributions Can Cut Your Tax Bill
There are still ways to decrease your 2022 tax bill even though the year is over. You have until April 18th to make contributions to traditional and Roth IRAs. If you did not maximize your contributions in 2022, you have time to do so in order to qualify for the max tax break. You must be at least 50 to qualify for catch-up contributions. For 2022, the contribution limit was $7,000.00 for those with traditional or Roth IRAs over 50. Making the max contribution will not only help you make progress toward your retirement goals, but it will also reduce your taxable income.
2. Fix Mistakes Early and Quickly
If you have filed your NJ tax return and have since noticed a mistake, you should be proactive about correcting the error immediately. You will need to fill out the NJ-1040X form for the year you wish to amend. In addition to the form, you will also need to submit the documents supporting the amendment. Even if you initially filed your return online, you must submit a paper amendment. Working with a tax pro can help ensure you complete this process correctly and do not make more mistakes.
3. Track Your Federal and NJ Return
If you have filed your taxes and are anxiously awaiting your funds, you can use the IRS tracker to track your refund. With the “Where’s My Refund?” tracker on the IRS.gov website, you can enter your information to get updates on your refund. The status will update within 24 hours of filing and once a day after that until you receive your funds. NJ also has a similar online tracker to check the status of your state return. The IRS advises that you can expect to wait around 21 days for direct deposit, while NJ claims a processing time of about four weeks. Tracking your return can help you catch any depositing mistakes early.
4. Filing an Extension is Not an Extension to Pay Taxes
While the tax filing and payment deadline is April 18th, those who need more time can request an extension. This request has to be submitted by April 18th, and extends the due date to October 17th. However, an extension to file is not an extension to pay. Most taxpayers must pay by April 18th to avoid paying penalties and interest on the amount owed. To avoid these consequences, you should estimate what you owe and pay that amount by the regular deadline. A tax professional can help you determine how much you are estimated to owe.
Tax season is in full swing, and we are busy helping NJ taxpayers file their taxes correctly and on time. Halter CPA can help you minimize your tax burden while alleviating some of the stress of filing time.