Tax time is coming |

Tax time is coming

Susan Wood

Are you ready for one of those certainties in life?

To ensure South Lake Tahoe filers have ample opportunity to send their income tax returns, post offices around the lake are open Good Friday and Monday.

The main Post Office on Al Tahoe Boulevard is open the last day to file from 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. The others are open during their regular hours.

Those who are unprepared and can’t meet the deadline to file with the Internal Revenue Service are urged to submit an extension.

“At the very least, the main thing is, if you don’t file an extension and you owe money, you could be looking at a 25 percent penalty on top of what you owe,” said Scott Wait, a certified tax specialist based in Reno.

The problems may not end there for individuals already paying taxes on previous years.

“It’s a stiff penalty. Right now, anyone who owes money and is on an installment plan – that’s the equivalent to a 9 percent-a-year loan,” Wait added.

The extension form’s name appears typical for the IRS. Form No. 4868 – called the Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax – may be obtained on line at the IRS Web site at Click on “forms and publications” on the bottom of the page.

Those who don’t have the necessary PDF software to use the form to file may also retrieve the extension form from the Lake Tahoe branch of the El Dorado County Library on Rufus Allen Boulevard. It’s open Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., but it’s closed Monday.

Forms may also be on hand at office supply stores and in tax preparers’ offices.

For those Lake Tahoe residents destined to spend the weekend in front of a mound of papers, there are a few reminders of the tax code this year.

The California Franchise Tax Board released a few new tax credits signed into law last year. They include: long-term care credit for caregivers; teacher retention credit for educators; and refundable child and dependent care expenses credit for parents.

In his $1.6 trillion budget tax-cut proposal for 2002, President George W. Bush also proposed a number of new tax credits and deductions aimed at certain income groups and social needs.

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