The tax deadline has come and gone. Unfortunately, many will not think of their taxes again until April 16, 2018. But planning for next year can start now. Being organized and thinking ahead can save you time and money and make tax season less cumbersome.
Here are five things you can do now to make next April 16 easier.

Adjust your withholding.  Each year, millions of American workers have far more taxes withheld from their paycheck than is required. If you are a company driver, now is a good time to review your withholding to make sure the taxes withheld from your paycheck are closer to the taxes you’ll owe. This is especially true if you normally get a large refund. Why give the IRS an interest-free loan on your hard-earned cash? If you owed tax when you filed, you may need to increase the federal income tax withheld from your wages. Use the IRS Withholding Calculator at IRS.gov to complete a new Form W-4, Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate.

Store your return in a safe place.  Put your 2016 tax return and supporting documents somewhere safe. If you need to refer to your return in the future, you’ll know where to find it. For example, you may need a copy of your return when applying for a home loan or financial aid. You can also use it as a helpful guide for next year's return. Use an app like CamScanner on your iPhone or Android to easily make a digital copy of your return to save.

Organize your records.  Establish one location in your truck or one folder on your computer where you can put tax-related records during the year. When you get home, transfer all the files from your truck to one location at your home where all other members of your household store their tax-related papers. This will avoid a scramble for misplaced per diem counts or charity receipts come tax time. Make sure to back up your files!

Hire a tax professional.  Use a tax professional to help with tax planning and start your search now! You’ll have more time when you're not up against a deadline or anxious to receive your tax refund. Choose a tax professional wisely and one that specializes in the trucking industry to make sure you get every deduction you deserve. ATBS, for example, has helped over 120,000 trucking professionals with their taxes, bookkeeping, and accounting. There are more tips for choosing a preparer at IRS.gov.

Keep up with changes.  Find out about tax law changes, helpful tips and IRS announcements all year by subscribing to IRS Tax Tips through IRS.gov or following ATBS’ facebook page at www.facebook.com/go2ATBS.

Find forms and publications at IRS.gov or order them by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).


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Sean Bryant

Sean is a graduate of the University of Iowa where he received a Bachelor's of Arts degree in economics. After beginning his career in banking, he found his love for marketing. Before arriving at ATBS in 2014 he spent time working for two different technology startups as well as his own freelance marketing company.

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April 15, 2014