Tax deadline brings rush of last-minute filers

2013-04-15T15:04:00Z 2013-04-17T14:30:07Z Tax deadline brings rush of last-minute filersDiane Poulton Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
April 15, 2013 3:04 pm  • 

CROWN POINT | Taxpayers, whether through procrastination or not wanting to send in money owed until the last possible day, kept tax preparers and post offices bustling with activity Monday.

The Crown Point Post Office parking lot was filled with a steady stream of vehicles at noon and lines were more than 10 people deep inside.

Crown Point resident Tom Marincek was among the last-minute tax filers.

“I was not going to wait; I was going to do it early,” said Marincek, who didn’t owe any taxes. “Since I have retired I have more projects than Carter has liver pills.”

Marincek prefers mailing his taxes rather than file electronically.

“I don’t trust the online services,” Marincek said.

Although the post office line was long, Marincek said workers were efficient and it only took five minutes to be waited on.

A supervisor at the Merrillville post office said it would be open until 7 p.m., the latest of any branches. He said there has been a steady stream of people out the door all day. He said he was assisting at the front counter to alleviate the wait.

Steven Markowitz, of Markowitz and Associates Ltd. in Lowell, said Monday was “about the busiest April 15” his company has ever seen.*

“The phone is ringing off the hook,” Markowitz said. “The e-mails are flying like crazy.”

Markowitz said most of his work was following up with clients who had been seen earlier. He said people are bringing in their signature pages for electronic filing or giving last minute information to finish returns.

“We have received a few phones calls from people wanting to come in to have their returns done,” Markowitz said. “But we are not H&R Block, so we don’t really take walk-ins. Last year at this time we were sitting here finishing up a few things. The phone would ring a few times.”

Markowitz said about 75 to 80 percent of his clients who have been procrastinating owe money.

“The people we are dealing with today are paying as opposed to getting refunds,” Markowitz said. “They don’t want to separate themselves from their money.”

About a half dozen other tax preparers when contacted Monday said they were too busy with last minute tax filers to talk.

* Editor's note: This story has been updated from an earlier version.

Business name incorrect: An article in Tuesday's Business section about the tax deadline had an incorrect name of a Lowell-based accounting and tax preparation service. The business is Markowitz and Associates Ltd. The Times regrets the error.

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