Hold Your Horses. Tax Season Will Kick Off Late This Year

We know you’re all just ready to put on your IRS face paint and get into the spirit of Tax Season, but there’s some sad news for tax fans everywhere today — this year’s filing season won’t kick off until Jan. 30, more than a week later than expected.

No, this isn’t a case of some NHL-style lockout, with auditors and tax reviewers demanding a higher portion of the TV rights. It’s actually a result of all the last-minute tweaks and negotiations that resulted in steering the country away from the dreaded Fiscal Cliff last week.

Because of various changes to a handful of tax provisions, the IRS needed to reprogram its computers — which, we imagine, still work off of reel-to-reel data storage devices that take up entire floors of a gray factory in D.C. — and revise some tax forms accordingly. This takes time… time we could all be out filing our tax returns.

For those of you that genuinely need the refund you’re expecting from the IRS and were hoping to file immediately on Jan. 22, you will have to wait.

According to the IRS, on Jan. 30, about 80% (120 million households) will be able to file after Jan. 30. However, some folks will need to wait if their taxes include affected forms like Form 5695 (residential energy credits), Form 4562 (depreciation and amortization) and Form 3800 (general business credit). Depending on the availability of those forms, some taxpayers may have to wait until March to join in the tax-filing fun.

The delay in starting Tax Season 2013 will not apparently impact the April 15 deadline.