As everyone knows, Congress made decisions very late last year that affected tax returns. As a result of those decisions, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will not be able to accept tax returns until January 30th, 2013. This is more than one week later than the original scheduled date of January 22, 2013. Even though E-filing will open in January, some forms may not be available until February or March. The list of these forms has not been made available yet. Many of the individual tax return forms and schedules are still in draft form. According to the National Association of Enrolled agents (NAEA), the IRS has communicated to them that approved forms that will be accepted on January 30th will be available no later than January 22nd.
Taxpayers should understand that there is no advantage to filing on paper prior to January 30th as IRS will not process paper returns until January 30th. Additionally, there is no advantage between using self-prepared or online software, and going to a professional. All E-file providers will be held to the same standard for transmissions. There will also not be any advantage to transmitting returns early because the IRS will reject those returns.
Rejects will just delay the tax filing process, therefore it is in a taxpayer’s interest to take their time, gather their documents, and wait for the bugs to be worked out.
Of course, there has not been any mention of the deadline being extended past April 15th. So in conclusion, this is not a good year to procrastinate. Apparently only those elected to Congress can do that.