Okay, that's a joke. We're so busy with our client work, we can't really enjoy the college basketball or the new baseball season, but at least we still have April Fools.
And yes, I know that day has already passed. More coffee please.
But speaking of things getting past us — are YOU procrastinating with your taxes?
If so, you're not alone. The most recent IRS data we've seen as practitioners shows that overall, tax filing is slower than in recent years. The new tax laws, the earlier government shutdown, and lots of confusion out there has meant a lot of late-filers.
Perhaps that's you? Or some of your Staten Island friends?
In fact, did you know that some tax firms (and "off the shelf" software companies) actually raise their prices on procrastinators? That's not how I believe clients should be treated.
Now, speaking of things that are often missed…
An Under-Utilized Tax Break For Staten Island Taxpayers: Summer Day Camp
"Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability." – Sam Keen
As our weather has finally (maybe?) turned toward spring, we know summer is right around the corner. I want to give you three ways you can look out for tax savings when it comes to summer day camps. Taking this information into account will help you plan your summer accordingly, as you think about signing your children up for this win-win opportunity.
Before we get to the tax part, a quick word on summer day camps.
You might have noticed I'm not saying just "summer camp". Traditionally, overnight summer camps have been a fun experience for kids, but without a doubt, day camps have grown exponentially across the U.S. as they are often cheaper and more convenient.
If you are curious about summer day camps for your kids or grandkids, just Google "summer day camps in Staten Island (or your specific area)" and a plethora of options should come up for you to check out.
Ready for the good news now (and something your parents might not have known)?
The Child and Dependent Care tax credit directly applies to summer day camp costs. The tax credit covers up to $3,000 for one child and $6,000 for two or more.
However, you won't see a tax break for the exact same amounts you pay. Why? The tax credit you receive will merely be a percentage based on your annual income. There is some math involved, and this outline via IRS.gov will help on the technical side of things, but let me throw something else your way:
The summer is a great time for us to schedule our first meeting related to your 2019 taxes. I would love to help you approach tax season next year with more confidence than ever before. As this tax season winds down, please reach out and give me a call. Some of these tax credits (like the Child and Dependent Care credit), the math and legal terminology can be confusing. But that's why I want to help.
Right here: (718) 356-5178
Now, while the kids are away, make sure some cash can stay.
Worthy To Note
Lastly, it's important to note this summer day camp tax break only applies to children under 13 years old. The child also needs to be considered your dependent. And remember the break won't count towards overnight camps, only the growing-in-popularity day camps like we mentioned before.
As you gear up for seasonal sunshine and kids running rampant, know there is some cash (and sanity?) you could save … all you need to do is send your kids to day camp and give me a call.
And don't forget the sunscreen.
Anthony R. Mauriello, E.A.