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Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Incorporated

Make moves now to lower next year's tax bill

Year-end tax planning these next several weeks will be refreshingly straightforward for a change. The past few years have been fraught with so much uncertainty about income tax rates, estate taxes and expiring deductions that planning wasn't easy. A year ago, for instance, Congress waited so long to act on expiring tax breaks that the IRS couldn't update all its systems in time for the start of the tax season. Millions of taxpayers had to wait until February to get their returns processed. "It was a tumultuous year, as many of them seem to be," says Mark Steber, chief tax officer with Jackson Hewitt Tax Service. But — cross your fingers — there isn't...