Tax Deadlines

VA Income Tax Payment Extension & Penalty Waiver – Any Virginia income tax payments due during the time period of April 1, 2020, to June 1, 2020, will now be due on June 1, 2020. This includes individual and corporate income taxes.  Late payment penalties will not be charged if payments are made by June 1, 2020. However, interest will still accrue, so if you can pay by the original filing due date, you should.

The IRS and most states have moved tax return due dates to July 15. Estimated tax filers should pay their second quarter estimated payment by June 15. First quarter payments are due July 15. If you have any questions about deadlines, please do not hesitate to contact our office.

Unexpected Loss Financial Checklist

Losing a loved one can be overwhelming and challenging. In the event of an unexpected loss you can turn to The Hopkins Group for guidance and support. A checklist of important financial obstacles is a good place to start and we are here to help you during this difficult time.

  • Family attorney, CPA and Investment Advisor: Consult your trusted team to help settle your loved one’s estate and any final instructions that must be accommodated.
  • File the deceased’s Final Tax Return. Ensure that the executor of the estate has the information necessary to file final income tax returns. Consult with your CPA regarding the requirements for filing estate or trust income tax returns and estate tax returns.  While the 2020 federal estate tax limit is $11.58 million (more if your spouse died previously and you elected portability), the states often have much lower limits for filing.
  • Documents: Locate and review any Estate documents including a will, trust and power of attorney. Gather Financial documents including: stock certificates, title documents, bearer bonds, bank statements, brokerage statements, deeds, prenuptial agreement, life insurance policies, bank accounts, investment accounts, real-estate ownership, retirement accounts, business ownership, mortgages, owed taxes, credit card debt, unpaid bills, keys to a safe deposit box or home safe.  Collect important Personal documents including: birth certificate, marriage and divorce certificates and Social Security information.
  • Contact Employer: Determine if any outstanding compensation is due. Find out whether surviving dependents are still eligible for health or insurance benefits and whether there is a life insurance policy through the company. Let them know about benefits due to beneficiaries. Check their retirement or pension plans. Notify your employer if this is a death of a spouse which may be a “life event” that may trigger benefit decisions.
  • Social Security Administration (SSA): Contact the SSA and any other agency that might be making monthly payments to the deceased. Depending on circumstances, survivor benefits could be payable to you.
  • Veterans Administration (VA): Contact the VA if necessary, they may cover death, burial and memorial benefits. They will also stop any monthly payments that the deceased may have been receiving.
  • Heath and Life Insurance: Contact companies as soon as possible.
  • Change names: Change all property titles and remove your spouse’s name and update insurance policies. Change titles on all jointly-held bank, investment, and credit accounts. Close accounts that were in your spouse’s name only.
  • Credit Bureaus: Send a letter to all 3 major Credit Bureaus and get a copy of your loved one’s credit reports so you’re aware of all debts. The 3 major credit bureaus are EquifaxExperian, and TransUnion. Ask to have a notification in the credit report that says “Deceased – do not issue” so new credit is not taken out in their name.
  • Credit Cards: Notify credit card companies and pay off balances. Work with creditors to pay off any outstanding balances. Usually, the executor of the estate will handle debt liquidation. You are not personally liable for your loved one’s debts unless you’re married (for some debts) or are a co-signer on a loan.
  • College Loans: Call the financial aid office if you have a child in college, you may qualify for more assistance.
  • Utilities: Discontinue if the home will be vacated, ensure that utilities are shut off.
  • Mail: Arrange for the Post Office to forward mail if needed to the executor of the estate.

Document Scanning

Ready to start scanning your documents? There is an app for that too! Clients have personally recommended the CamScanner Basic free app that turns your mobile device into a document scanner and allows you to take a photograph of a document, convert it into a PDF and upload it to a cloud storage service such as Dropbox or email it to yourself and others.  Please note that The Hopkins Group will be implementing SmartVault as its secure, document-sharing platform for this tax season.  More details to follow.

ARTICLE: 6 of the Best Document Scanner Apps