AUSTIN (KXAN) - There are only three days left for people to file their taxes, and many people will spend the weekend crunching numbers.
The Better Business Bureau says more than 60 percent of taxpayers will go to a tax preparer and 30 percent will rely on tax software to file their taxes. Many tax companies say that if people come to them this weekend, odds are they will recommend them to get an extension.
"Just make sure that you get an extension either way because there are two penalties," explained John Paul Krueger, President of Five Stone Tax in Austin. " There some for not filing on time there's one for not paying on time, make sure you get an extension either way."
The Internal Revenue says taxpayers can go online and get an extension. "Remember, this is an extension of time to file, not an extension of time to pay. However, taxpayers who are having trouble paying what they owe may qualify for payment plans and other relief," explained the IRS on it's website.
Those who haven't finished their returns can get a six-month extension. People can go through Free File and that service.
Budget cuts are impacting the IRS. It's lost about 10,000 employees through attrition in the past two years. The shortage is causing more people to have to rely on the web rather than a person.
It resulted in long waits for the departments help line. The average waiting time is about 18 minutes this tax season. That's up 13 minutes from 20-11.
The hiring freeze has limited the IRS from replacing workers who retire or leave. It's lost more than 9 percent of its total workforce.
"A lot of changes with the IRS the tax laws weren't ultimately finished until early this year so that kind of moved some deadlines and moved your ability to file certain returns until later,' explained Krueger. "A lot of people's forms aren't coming out on time and then the processing of refunds are delayed due to identity theft which is a big problem with the IRS."
If you wait until the last minute to mail your taxes, you need to know about a change at the post office.
This year, Austin's post offices will not stay open late for midnight mail collections.
The post office at 8224 Cross Park Drive will have its last pickup at 8 p.m. on Monday. All the other post offices in Austin will have their last pickups at 5:30 p.m.
Austin's postmaster says there has been a big drop in the demand for midnight pickups on tax day, since more people are filing online.
Family and friends held a vigil Wednesday at the State Capitol in hopes that a Bastrop man can win a new trial.
An unusually cold blast of arctic air arriving early Thursday will be followed by an increasing chance of freezing drizzle/rain and sleet by Friday morning.
The HealthCare.gov website is working more smoothly for central Texans.
City leaders in West Lake Hills discussed the ongoing concern with the city's water system Wednesday night. The problems arise when water is needed most; fighting fires.
Federal, state and local authorities on Wednesday arrested 15 people and seized 70 firearms in raid on a methamphetamine operation based in Burnet County.
Former Georgetown Police Officer Stephanie Brown said her ex-boyfriend, former Round Rock Officer Eric Poteet, made up accusations against her after she broke up with him.