Unfiled Tax Returns – IRS Policy Statement 5-133
If you have unfiled tax returns from previous years, it would be a good idea to file those returns as soon as possible. Failing to file a tax return could mean that you lose the right to claim a refund. Alternatively, if you do not file a tax return within a certain timeframe, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may institute delinquency proceedings against you. If you or a family member would like assistance handling unfiled tax returns, you should consult with an experienced Roseville unfiled tax return lawyer.
The skilled attorneys at the NewPoint Law Group, LLP, possess decades of experience handling a wide assortment of tax issues for residents of California. We understand the tax implications of having unfiled returns, and we are here to guide you through the process of filing past-due returns. To schedule a confidential legal consultation, call is at 800-358-0305.
Reasons to File Your Past Due Tax Return in California
There are various reasons to file your past due tax returns as soon as possible. For example, waiting too long to file your returns can result in owing interest or being hit with a tax penalty. However, filing old tax returns does not always mean that you will be penalized in some way. The following is a list of reasons to file your past-due tax returns.
Claiming Your Refund
If you are eligible for a tax refund withholding or estimated taxes, you need to file your return before you can no longer claim it. Specifically, the timeframe for claiming your refund is three years from the date of the return due date. The three-year also applies if you want to claim a tax credit.
Under certain circumstances, the IRS may withhold a tax refund if you failed to file a tax return or multiple tax returns. The only way to get your withheld tax return in this situation is to file the past-due returns.
Protect Your Retirement Benefits
Self-employed workers that do not file their income tax returns are not having their income reported to the Social Security Administration. The issue with this is the self-employed worker is not earning credits for their Social Security disability or retirement benefits.
Additionally, self-employed workers that do not pay their quarterly Social Security taxes could owe a large tax bill in the future. While it may be possible to receive a tax penalty abatement, it is wise to avoid that situation entirely.
Loan Approval Issues
Financial institutions will often look at filed tax returns when determining whether to supply you with a loan. If you have multiple gaps in your filing history, this can affect your chances of receiving a loan to finance a home, car, or even your education.
To learn more about filing your past due returns, you should continue reading and consider speaking with an experienced California tax lawyer.
How to File IRS Back Taxes
If you need to file back taxes with the IRS, you need to be very careful. The IRS meticulously looks over past due returns to search for any mistakes the taxpayer may have committed. That is why you should gather information regarding your old returns before you attempt to file them.
The first information you should request from the IRS is your income transcripts from the previous years. If you are self-employed or have other income that may not be filed with the IRS, you should gather this information too. Next, you should calculate whether you are eligible for a deduction or tax credit.
If you are worried about a tax lien or other penalties, you should ask the IRS for more time to file. If you have multiple unfiled returns, you may have to file as far back as six years.
It is also a good idea to contact a tax attorney to help you with this process. Most taxpayers with unfiled individual or business tax returns start by contacting their previous tax accountant. Taxpayers should be careful in doing so because the federal government — and most states — recognizes a very limited privilege for accountant-client communications, and confidentiality rules only apply to civil tax disputes. Only the attorney-client privilege will protect confidential communications from being used in a criminal proceeding. Since this privilege is vital to criminal defense, it is extremely important to speak with a tax attorney if there is any chance of a criminal investigation related to unfiled tax returns.
California Tax Return Planning Attorneys for Delinquent Returns
If you are having issues with your past due tax returns, you should contact an experienced California tax return planning attorney. The NewPoint Law Group, LLP, serves residents of Sacramento, Roseville, and many areas across California and we are ready to represent you. Our firm can help you claim a refund from a previous year or help you resolve a tax issue. To schedule a confidential legal consultation to discuss your unfiled returns, call the NewPoint Law Group, LLP at 800-358-0305.