Tax season is just around the corner. We have put together a few timely insights and reminders:
• Don't make any tax decisions based on current speculation about tax policy. News programs are overrun with opinions about how the tax code will change in coming years. The pundits and anchors sharing these opinions are intentionally dramatic, leading viewers to want to take preemptive action. Don't do it. There simply is not enough information available to make a thoughtful, informed decision.
• Similarly, we doubt any changes at this point will be retroactive to 2020. The tax filing season starts on February 12, so retroactive changes would force a multitude of early filers to amend their returns unless Congress can pass a bill within the next few days. Remember: a tax package will have to pass both chambers of Congress and be signed by the President before it takes effect. This process took around six weeks when the last package passed in 2017, so we'd expect at least that much advance notice as it relates to significant changes to the code.
• We will be sending you a summary of all your taxable gains and losses for 2020. Save this with your other tax materials. It will come in handy for you or your accountant at filing time.
• Your 1099s from the bank (SSG/Pershing) will be sent in February. Most will be issued February 15th, a few may be sent on February 28th. If you signed up for online delivery of tax statements, you will get an email notification when they are available. If you need help, we can send you any tax forms you require, either by mail or email. Please ask us.
• Before you do your taxes, make sure you have tax statements from all of your taxable accounts, including banks and mortgage companies. Don’t assume they will all be mailed – you may have to look online for forms you are missing.
• As a reminder, the filing deadline is April 15, 2021 and the IRS will grant an automatic six-month extension to those who make timely requests.