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As part of the Leal Insurance Services Core Values, we feel it is important to help educate our clients and community on diverse topics. The following blog post was written by a local, San Antonio professional that is an expert in their field. If you have questions on the topic, their contact information is below, or please reach out to Leal Insurance Services and we can help get you connected. Leal Insurance Services Core Values: Listen and Evaluate, Educate, Advocate, Local.

Taxes. The word sends shivers down most people’s spine. If your New Year’s Eve resolution was to be more organized or procrastinate less, Tax Season will most certainly put that to the test. As we do our annual shuffle through tax documents and spread sheets, know that with a little basic knowledge and some professional help, taxes can be a pleasant experience. Here are a few tips to prepare you for this tax season:

Don’t Stuff it Away
If you get a letter that says “important tax document”, trust me, it’s important!. Most people are familiar with getting their W-2 or 1099 every year, but what about those 1098-E’s, Mortgage Interest Statements, or 1098-T’s. These are the forms that are typically overlooked and stuffed away. While you may not know exactly what they are for, your tax preparer will. In many cases they can mean extra money in your pocket in the form of deductions or credits.

Give Yourself the Credit
Speaking of deductions and credits, a professional preparer will look for as many of these as possible. Enough deductions will reduce the amount of your income that is taxable. Credits are dollar amounts directly applied to a taxpayers return. Owning a home can be a major deduction. Other possible deductions to consider are job expenses, out of pocket medical expenses, and state sales tax. Credits are given to taxpayers for a variety of different reasons. A professional preparer can determine if you’re eligible for the Child Tax Credit, Dependent Care Credit (day care), Earned Income Credit, American Opportunity Credit, Lifetime Learning Credit, and many others.

“You have to spend money to make it”

Do you own a small business or rental property? Most of us can easily think of how much income we made, but let’s not forget about those expenses. ! Calculating your expenses can help you reduce your taxable income. Insurance is typically a big expense. If you own a rental property, your insurance on that property is an expense. So is the automobile insurance for your company vehicle, and other types of insurance like professional liability. Expenses aren’t just limited to insurance. Other expenses include advertisement, office supplies, taxes and fees, management fees, and many more. A professional preparer can help you determine the best way to claim expenses.

The Deadline
April 18th 2016 11:59pm. This is the deadline to file your taxes and pay any tax due for the 2016 filing season. You also have the ability to file an extension before this date. These tips are just a handful of things to consider when getting ready to file this year, and I hope will lead you off to a good start. Starting early gives you time to prepare and work with your tax professional to ensure to best tax outcome possible. For more information don’t hesitate to reach out to me.

Happy Tax Season,
Richard James
James Family Tax Services

  Richard James is the proud owner of James Family Tax Services. He has been preparing taxes for over 5 years and is the third generation in his family to do so. His passion and commitment is in providing fair and honest tax preparation services to the San Antonio community. Richard James is an alumni of Texas Tech University and also served honorably in the United States Army.

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NOTICE: This blog and website are made available by the publisher for educational and informational purposes only. It is not be used as a substitute for competent insurance, legal, or tax advice from a licensed professional in your state. By using this blog site you understand that there is no broker client relationship between you and the blog and website publisher.
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