ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Tax season is on, but this year you may want to think about when exactly is the best time to file.
It all comes down to those expected $1,400 stimulus checks in the next relief package. Most people want to maximize the amount of money they get.
"If you haven't filed your tax return yet for 2020, this stimulus check will be based off your income reported on your 2019 tax return," said Bill Bloss, an accountant with RLB in Allentown.
Right now, the government uses your 2019 taxes to determine your eligibility. But what if you lost money in 2020? The theory is if you file your 2020 taxes as early as possible, before the new stimulus is passed, then that tax return will be used and you will get more money.
"They've got to look at their 2019 income situation compared to 2020. If their income in 2020 has declined they're in a great position to consider filing early," Bloss said.
On the flip side, if you made more money in 2020 compared to 2019, you may want to wait.
And if you've been on on unemployment, you may want to wait regardless.
"Right now unemployment benefits are taxable but it's being suggested in this new stimulus bill they may make unemployment benefits non-taxable," Bloss said. "If we file the return and we have to amend it, that's gonna cost you more money."
We still don't know what exactly will be in the new stimulus, but the package is expected to pass in the upcoming weeks. The tax deadline may also be extended.