top of page
  • What documents do I need to give my tax preparer?
    All W-2s and 1099s The amount of any other income not reported on a W-2 or 1099 You may list this on the same page as your business expenses 1095-A if you had health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) Investment statements and bank interest statements Student loan interest statements or name of payee and amount Mortgage interest statement or amount Property tax amount (may be on the mortgage interest statement) Child care expenses (day care, after school care, summer day camp) Include name, address, and EIN/SS of provider If you don't have the EIN/SS of provider, just make a note that you don't have it A list of any charitable donations to 501(c)3 nonprofits if you will be itemizing your deductions (see this FAQ) Our Business Expenses Worksheet If you had income from a rental property or hosted on AirBnB, our Schedule E Worksheet Your tax returns for the past two years (unless we prepared them) A voided check or bank routing and account numbers for direct deposit of refunds and possible direct debit of payments.
  • How do I get my documents to my preparer?
    Your preparer will send you a link to a secure folder, and you can upload scans or photos of your documents to the folder. Please make sure that photos of your documents are well-lit and not blurry! We need to be able to read the teeny-tiny numbers. And please name your documents before uploading them! We use Citrix ShareFile for secure document transfer. This is a highly regarded and highly encrypted system. However, if you prefer not to upload your documents, let your preparer know and make arrangements to drop-off or mail them.
  • What if my preparer from last year isn’t available to work with me this year?
    Please feel free to schedule an appointment with whomever suits you best. It’s great to keep continuity with your previous preparer, but we are all qualified tax preparers and share client files.
  • I'm confused about deductions. What’s a standard deduction versus itemized deductions? Are business deductions the same as itemized deductions?
    If you are self-employed or an independent contractor, you file a Schedule C in addition to the 1040 that everyone files. You deduct the expenses associated with your self-employment on this Schedule C. These are often referred to as your “business deductions.” Accurately calculating these deductions is one of the main services that we provide - we will work with you to find every possible legitimate expense to help reduce your tax burden. The “standard deduction” and “itemized deductions” are what most folks think of when they hear “deductions” and “taxes.” These are separate from your business deductions. Every taxpayer can take the standard deduction from their income. The standard deduction for 2023 is $13,850 for a single person, $27,700 for a married couple filing jointly, and $20,800 for heads of households. Because the standard deduction is now so high, “itemized deductions” are becoming more rare. However, if the sum of your medical expenses (exceeding 7.5% of your adjusted gross income), state, local and property taxes (up to $10,000), mortgage interest, and charitable contributions exceeds the standard deduction, you can itemize these deductions on a Schedule A and get a tax benefit. Unreimbursed employee expenses are no longer deductible on Schedule A, so all business deductions should go on your Schedule C.
  • Do I still get a deduction for charitable contributions if I don't itemize my deductions?
    Unfortunately, the above-the-line $300 allowable charitable contribution deduction was only temporary, and does not apply to the 2023 tax year. Now, to take a charitable contribution deduction, you'll have to have itemized deductions if those deductions add up to more than the standard deduction - $13,850 for single taxpayers and married filing separately, $27,700 for married couples filing jointly, and $20,800 for heads of households.
  • Do you give discounts to clients who are low income? What about payment plans?
    We have always kept our prices much lower than most tax preparation services as a way of demonstrating our commitment to serving our arts community. But if your income falls below a certain level (for example if you are on Medicaid), please don’t hesitate to discuss your situation with your preparer. You are always welcome to offer a barter or pay in installments. Just ask your preparer. And if your taxes are simple, another option is to file them yourself. The IRS has a free online filing service that is relatively easy to use.
  • I started working as an independent contractor in Philadelphia in 2023, and I've heard that I have to get a City of Philadelphia tax account number. How do I do that?
    If you are a self-employed/business tax payer in Philadelphia, you must be registered with the City. Here's how: Visit the Philadelphia Tax Center. Click “register a new taxpayer” in the “new taxpayers” box on the lower middle of the page. Follow the prompts to create your username and password. Your entity classification is Individual/Sole Proprietor. You ID type is your SS# (even if you have an EIN) Even if you had your business is years prior to 2023, register your business as starting in 2023. You are registering to file Net Profits Tax and Business Income and Receipts Tax. Click "no" for Jump Start Philly eligible. If you are an artist, performer, writer, musician, your business code is 711510. Otherwise, search using key word. Everything else should be self-explanatory!
  • I've filed Net Profits Tax and Business Income and Receipts Tax returns in the past, but I don't have a Philadelphia Tax Center account. How do I set one up?
    Visit the Philadelphia Tax Center. Click "create a username and password" in the "existing taxpayers" box on the lower middle of the page. Follow the prompts. The City will send you a letter so that you can log in with a username and PIN.
  • I heard something about Venmo, PayPal, and 1099-Ks. What’s up with that?
    The IRS has announced that the $600 reporting threshold for third-party platforms, such as Venmo, Paypal, or Stripe, will NOT go into effect for the 2024 tax filing season (2023 tax year). For tax year 2023, you will receive a 1099-K from these payment platforms if you had business transactions that exceed $20,000 and 20 transactions - that is to say, transactions that were tagged as "paying for a good or service" rather than "paying friends and family." The IRS has delayed the $600 reporting threshold, and has announced that they are planning a $5,000 threshold for the 2024 tax year. This link on Venmo's website provides a good overview. When this is finally implemented, this income will be reported on your Schedule C. Personal transactions on payment platforms do not have to be reported as income. Remember, all self-employment income must be reported on your Schedule C, regardless of whether it's on a 1099-NEC or 1099-K.
  • I've heard something about filing a BOI (Business Ownership Information). What is that?
    All LLCs (including single-member LLCs) and corporations (including S corps) are required to file a BOI report by January 1, 2025. This report is intended to provide transparency about the entity's owner(s). This is a simple form to fill out - you can do it yourself, for free. The form and more information can be found here.
charitable deduction
bottom of page