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’Tis the season

IRS sets tax filing to begin on Jan. 30

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013 3:00 p.m. CDT
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(Photo courtesy of metrocreative.com)
Tax filing season for the vast majority of individual taxpayers will open on Jan. 30, 2013. The Internal Revenue Service estimates the remaining households will be able to start filing in late February or into March.

CHICAGO – Illinois will follow federal guidelines recently announced by the IRS, according to the Illinois Department of Revenue.

Tax filing season for individual taxpayers will open on Jan. 30, 2013.

Following the January tax law changes made by Congress under the American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA), the Internal Revenue Service announced it plans to open the 2013 filing season and begin processing individual income tax returns on Jan. 30.

The IRS will begin accepting tax returns on that date after updating forms and completing programming and testing of its processing systems.

This will reflect the bulk of the late tax law changes enacted Jan. 2. The announcement means that the vast majority of tax filers — more than 120 million households — should be able to start filing tax returns starting Jan 30.

The IRS estimates that remaining households will be able to start filing in late February or into March because of the need for more extensive form and processing systems changes.

This group includes people claiming residential energy credits, depreciation of property or general business credits. Most of those in this group file more complex tax returns and typically file closer to the April 15 deadline or obtain an extension.

“We have worked hard to open tax season as soon as possible,” IRS Acting Commissioner Steven T. Miller said. “This date ensures we have the time we need to update and test our processing systems.”

The IRS will not process paper tax returns before the anticipated Jan. 30 opening date.

There is no advantage to filing on paper before the opening date, and taxpayers will receive their tax refunds much faster by using e-file with direct deposit.

“The best option for taxpayers is to file electronically,” Miller said.

The opening of the filing season follows passage by Congress of an extensive set of tax changes in ATRA on Jan. 1, 2013, with many affecting tax returns for 2012. While the IRS worked to anticipate the late tax law changes as much as possible, the final law required that the IRS update forms and instructions as well as make critical processing system adjustments before it can begin accepting tax returns.

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