New IRS2GO Mobile App Announced

IRS Scams“Where’s my Refund?” This popular feature on the IRS web site (www.irs.gov) allows taxpayers to see the status of their refund after filing their income tax return.

Now with a recent announcement, the IRS is making their Refund Status service available on the 2014 version of their Mobile App called IRS2GO.

What can you do on the new IRS2GO?

Point Refund status. By entering your Social Security Number, selecting your filing status, and entering the amount of your anticipated refund you can see where your tax return is in the IRS filing process. For security purposes your Social Security number is being masked and encrypted. If you wish to check on the status of your refund:
When to check:
Point 1 24 hours after an e-filed tax return confirmation
Point 2 4 weeks after a mailed tax return is sent
What you need to provide:
Point 1 Social Security number
Point 2 Filing Status
Point 3 EXACT refund amount
Point Tax Records. You can also request copies of your tax return or a copy of your account transcript using the IRS Mobile App. While you may request the information from your phone, the actual transcript will be mailed to you within a few business days.
A note of caution

Remember, the IRS is also experiencing record levels of identity theft. If you plan on using the IRS2GO Mobile App, take the same security precautions you would if you were logging into your bank account. This includes, but is not limited to, using your personal internet network and not a public network.

To download the IRS2GO app with an iPhone or iTouch go to your iTunes app store. Android users can visit Google Play to download their version of the app.

Missing the Flow-through Deadline

March 17th

The penalty that does not fit the crime
Please remember March 17th is the due date for filing Sub S Corporation tax returns that have a year-end of December 31st. While the Form 1120S does not require making a tax payment, missing the due date could cost you plenty. This is despite the fact that late filing of the sub S tax return does not impact the receipt of the taxes due on April 15th.
Those that are getting this “gotcha” penalty are often sole proprietors and couples who have formed a Sub S Corporation to handle their small businesses. The penalty is calculated based on each partial month the return is late times each shareholder. So a return filed 17 days late with no tax due could cost a married couple with a small S-Corporation $350 to $400 in penalties!

Action to take

Point 1 If you have a Sub S Corporation, or other flow through entity, either file an extension or submit your tax return on time. Remember, an extension gives you six months to file and you do not owe the tax until your 1040 tax return due date (typically April 15th).
Point 2 Challenge the penalty. While you may not be successful, remember the US Treasury is still receiving the taxes owed to them on a timely basis
Point 3 Do not file your individual 1040 tax return until you have received all your K-1 tax forms from the flow-through entities you own (like tax returns from Sub S and Limited Liability Corporations).

As always, should you have any questions or concerns regarding your situation please feel free to call.

IRS Announces Annual Scams

Each year the IRS announces “Dirty Dozen Tax Scams” they encounter most frequently regarding frivolous tax arguments and fraud. Here are five of the scams that impact most taxpayers.

Check Identity Theft. To no one’s surprise Identity Theft tops the IRS list of scams this year. It is a large problem at the department and vast resources are being deployed to reduce this risk. Here is a link to the IRS identity protection page should you wish to know more. IRS identity theft
Check Phone scams. This tax scam has appeared on the IRS list for many years. What is new this year, is that would be thieves are calling you and they have some of your personal information (including your Social Security number). The bottom line? Never give information over the phone to someone claiming to be from the IRS when they call.
Check Phishing emails. This recurring scam involves receiving fake emails from the IRS. Remember the IRS does not initiate contact through emails.
Check Offshore accounts. The IRS has made inroads to those hiding assets in off-shore accounts. This includes breaking the long-standing secrecy wall of Swiss bank accounts. If you have money in foreign accounts, you must understand the reporting requirements or you could be subject to substantial fines.
Check Donating to invalid charitable organizations. Prior to donating funds, make sure the charity is both legitimate and deemed a qualified charity by the IRS. After major disasters, many charitable givers are scammed into making donations to fake charities. In addition, new IRS charitable organization reporting requirements are not being followed by many organizations which makes donations to them non-deductible.

The IRS sees scams in many more forms than noted here. Should you wish more information please visit IRS.gov. Your best defense is to stay alert and ask for help prior to providing sensitive information to anyone who requests it.