Search This Blog

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Tax Filing Season Is Now Open

IRS YouTube Videos
When Will I Get My Refund: English | Spanish
Claiming EITC or ACTC? Your refund may be delayed: English
Welcome to Free File: English
Security Summit Identity Theft Tips Overview: English

IR-2017-06, Jan. 23, 2017

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service said today that it successfully started accepting and processing 2016 federal individual income tax returns on schedule. More than 153 million returns are expected to be filed this year.

People have until Tuesday, April 18, 2017 to file their 2016 returns and pay any taxes due. The deadline is later this year due to several factors. The usual April 15 deadline falls on Saturday this year, which would normally give taxpayers until at least the following Monday. However, Emancipation Day, a D.C. holiday, is observed on Monday, April 17, giving taxpayers nationwide an additional day to file. By law, D.C. holidays impact tax deadlines for everyone in the same way federal holidays do. Taxpayers requesting an extension will have until Monday, Oct. 16, 2017 to file.

"Following months of hard work, we successfully opened our processing systems today to start this year’s tax season,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “Getting to this point is a year-round effort for the IRS and the nation’s tax community. The dedicated employees of the IRS look forward to serving taxpayers this filing season, and I want to thank all of the tax and payroll community for their hard work that makes tax time smoother for the nation.”

The IRS expects more than 70 percent of taxpayers to get tax refunds this year. Last year, 111 million refunds were issued, with an average refund of $2,860.

Refund Delays

A law change now requires the IRS to hold refunds on tax returns claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) until Feb. 15. Under this change required by the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act, the IRS must hold the entire refund — even the portion not associated with the EITC and ACTC. Even though the IRS will begin releasing EITC and ACTC refunds on Feb. 15, many early filers will still not have actual access to their refunds until the week of Feb. 27. The additional delay is due to several factors, including weekends, the Presidents Day holiday and the time banks often need to process direct deposits.

This law change gives the IRS more time to detect and prevent fraud. Beyond the EITC and ACTC refunds and the additional security safeguards, the IRS anticipates issuing more than nine out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days. However, it’s possible a particular return may require additional review and take longer. Taxpayers are reminded that state tax agencies have their own refund processing timeframes that vary, and some states may make additional reviews to ensure their refunds are being issued properly. Even so, taxpayers should file as usual, and tax return preparers should submit returns as they normally do.

Use e-File
The IRS expects more than 80 percent of returns to be filed electronically. Choosing e-file and direct deposit remains the fastest and safest way to file an accurate income tax return and receive a refund.

Protecting Taxpayers from Identity Theft-Related Refund Fraud
The IRS continues to work with state tax authorities and the tax industry to address tax-related identity theft and refund fraud. As part of the Security Summit effort, stronger protections for taxpayers and the nation’s tax system are in effect for the 2017 tax filing season.

The new measures attack tax-related identity theft from multiple sides. Many changes will be invisible to taxpayers but will help the IRS, states and the tax industry provide new protections. New security requirements will better protect tax software accounts and personal information.

Free Tax Help
Low- and moderate-income taxpayers can get help filing their tax return for free. More than 90,000 volunteers around the country can help people correctly complete their return.

To get this filing help, taxpayers can visit one of the more than 12,000 community-based tax help sites that participate in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs. To find the nearest site, use the VITA/TCE Site Locator on or the IRS2Go mobile app.

Filing Assistance
The IRS reminds taxpayers that a trusted tax professional can provide helpful information about the tax laws. A number of tips about selecting a preparer and information about national tax professional groups are available on

The IRS urges all taxpayers to make sure they have all their year-end statements in hand before filing. This includes Forms W-2 from employers, Forms 1099 from banks and other payers. Doing so will help avoid refund delays and the need to file an amended return.

Online tools Many tax issues can now be resolved online or by phone from the convenience of a home or office. The IRS urges taxpayers to take advantage of the many tools and other resources available on IRS phone lines will be busy again this year, so in order to save time, people should first visit the IRS website for tax assistance.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Jolene Brown - Speaker - "A conversation is not a contract!"

Don't forget that the early registration deadline for the Powder River Family Business Workshop is next week on January 17th! Come join members of your community and find out what Jolene Brown's message can do for your business!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Powder River Family Business Workshop featuring Jolene Brown

The Top Ten Mistakes that Break Up a Family Business
Tuesday, January 24th 
1:00 - 5:00 pm
Powder River High School Auditorium

 Maybe you've heard about the upcoming family business workshop in Powder River County?  But did you know that this event could benefit you?   Although the workshop is being directed at "Ag" families, we want EVERY FAMILY BUSINESS to realize the impact that this workshop could have on your business plan and family dynamic!  Professional speaker Jolene Brown has agricultural experience, but her message is about FAMILY and what it takes to work together to create a successful business.  Here at Gardner & Billing CPAs, we are incredibly excited to help sponsor this event and we're extremely proud that our very own Melissa Billing, CPA will be featured on the workshop's Key Advisors Panel! 

The theme of this workshop is "The Top Ten Mistakes that Break Up a Family Business" and focuses on learning to prevent the aggravations and catastrophes that can befall a family business.  Jolene is sure to deliver an eye-opening presentation filled with humor and valuable lessons.  

So, who is Jolene Brown? 

She’s an award winning communicator, and an honored recipient of the Certified Speaking Professional, the highest earned designation of speaking achievement worldwide! She's known as a Champion for Agriculture whether from the platform, in the magazines, on television, or on the radio. She has also received the esteemed Legend of the Speaking Profession award from her peers in the speaking profession. Jolene Brown will have you laughing while you learn!
She is a walking-talking spokesperson and consultant for the family-owned business. With her keen insight and result-centered approach, she's been invited to sit at lots of kitchen tables and family business meeting rooms. Jolene has learned what works and what doesn't. She understands the unique challenges facing parents, siblings, in-laws and "outlaws" who work together.

Jolene's popular book, "Sometimes You Need More Than a 2x4!" contains how-to-tips so those in agriculture can increase productivity, profitability and peace of mind.
As co-owner and active partner on their Eastern Iowa corn and soybean farm, her practical experience includes plugging a grain auger, hypnotizing chickens and entertaining folks behind the equipment parts counter.

Jolene cares deeply about the ag industry and is on a mission to share leading-edge best practices.  She's a passionate supporter, promoter and champion for the people who feed, clothe and fuel the world.

Her worldwide audiences appreciate her fun-filled humor and real-life stories.  They leave with take home value, great big smiles on their faces and eager to return for more.