How to Survive the Days After Tax Day

Apr 16, 2001, 01:00 ET from Fellowes

    ITASCA, Ill., April 16 /PRNewswire/ -- According to an Internal Revenue
 Service report*, it's projected that 129,623,000 Americans will file
 individual tax returns in 2001.  And for most Americans, April 16 was the
 deadline, which means millions of us are breathing a sigh of relief.
     Yet, while the taxes may be done, it probably looks like Hurricane "Uncle
 Sam" has struck your house or office, leaving a wake of overflowing files,
 copies, and miscellaneous notes full of equations, scribbles and account
 numbers laying around.
     In the aftermath of Tax Day, Illinois-based Fellowes, a world leader in
 home and office organizational solutions, and home office expert Lisa Kanarek,
 offer a few smart tips on cleaning up and organizing this year's mess and a
 suggestion to make next year's tax time a little more manageable.
 
     1.  Clean Up -- Shredding:  With information and identity theft an
         ever-growing problem, Fellowes suggests that you take the time and
         determine what tax documents and records you need to keep for your
         files and then shred the rest.  After all, Tax Day is one of the few
         times when you have complete business and personal financial
         information in one place at one time credit card statements, bank
         statements, 401(k)s so don't toss them away in one trash bag.  Shred,
         shred, shred and then throw the pieces away.  Visit the Fellowes web
         site, http://www.fellowes.com , for information on what to shred and
         when.  If you don't have a shredder, the site also helps you choose
         one that's right for you.
 
     2.  Organize -- Paper Storage:  Now that you've shredded what you don't
         need, it's time to organize what's left.  Whether paper-based or saved
         on computer media, Lisa Karanek recommends archiving critical
         information safely and securely.  File paper records in folders or
         manila envelopes and clearly label and date each one.  Be as detailed
         as you like.  For example:
 
             "Evans Family 2000 Tax Records; Mark Evans' 401(k) information.
              Stored 4/17/2001."
 
         When this is done, place your records in a Fellowes Liberty(R)
         FastFold box.  Date and label the box, and be sure to list the items
         you've included.  Store the Liberty(R) box where it will be out of the
         way, yet easily accessible for reference next year.
 
     3.  Organize -- Media Storage:  If you use a bookkeeping or accounting
         software program for your taxes, store this year's financial data on a
         Zip(R) or CD.  Fellowes suggests labeling your media with the
         Fellowes/NEATO labeling program.  It's easy to use and allows you to
         custom-design family labels for CDs, floppies and Zip(R) disks for
         quick identification.  As with the paper files, the label you create
         should clearly detail the information and the date you saved it.  To
         keep everything in one place, store this media in the same box as your
         paper files.
 
     4.  Prepare.  To prepare for next April 15, Kanarek suggests organizing
         financial information consistently throughout the year.  Label and
         file check stubs, 401(k) updates, important receipts and other
         financial data in one place.  Also, keeping financial records and
         expenses on your computer or PDA with programs such as Quicken,
         QuickBooks, or Microsoft Money, makes tax reporting easier.  If you
         enter expenses on a regular basis, you can print out a category report
         at the end of the year.
 
         Towards the end of the year, choose a date to begin pre-tax
         organization, and be sure to give yourself enough time.  It may be
         helpful to write these dates in your calendar.  Fellowes suggests
         using their Slimpoint StylusPEN, part of their full line of PDA
         accessories.  The Slimpoint StylusPEN is a pen and PDA stylus in one;
         making it ideal for both paper and PDA tax time organizational needs.
 
     While nothing can take the tension out of Tax Day, Fellowes and home
 office expert Lisa Kanarek can help you survive the post tax-time whirlwind.
 With these four simple steps, your home and office will be organized and your
 important paperwork and computer media will be labeled and safely stored.  For
 more home office tips, visit Kanarek's site at http://www.homeofficelife.com .
 For more information on Fellowes and where to find the products mentioned
 here, please visit the Fellowes' web site at http://www.fellowes.com .
 
     *Projection of Returns to be Filed in Calendar Years 2000-2006, by Frank
       Zaffino; 3-9-00
      http://www.irs.gov/tax_stats/soi/other_pr.html
 
 

SOURCE Fellowes
    ITASCA, Ill., April 16 /PRNewswire/ -- According to an Internal Revenue
 Service report*, it's projected that 129,623,000 Americans will file
 individual tax returns in 2001.  And for most Americans, April 16 was the
 deadline, which means millions of us are breathing a sigh of relief.
     Yet, while the taxes may be done, it probably looks like Hurricane "Uncle
 Sam" has struck your house or office, leaving a wake of overflowing files,
 copies, and miscellaneous notes full of equations, scribbles and account
 numbers laying around.
     In the aftermath of Tax Day, Illinois-based Fellowes, a world leader in
 home and office organizational solutions, and home office expert Lisa Kanarek,
 offer a few smart tips on cleaning up and organizing this year's mess and a
 suggestion to make next year's tax time a little more manageable.
 
     1.  Clean Up -- Shredding:  With information and identity theft an
         ever-growing problem, Fellowes suggests that you take the time and
         determine what tax documents and records you need to keep for your
         files and then shred the rest.  After all, Tax Day is one of the few
         times when you have complete business and personal financial
         information in one place at one time credit card statements, bank
         statements, 401(k)s so don't toss them away in one trash bag.  Shred,
         shred, shred and then throw the pieces away.  Visit the Fellowes web
         site, http://www.fellowes.com , for information on what to shred and
         when.  If you don't have a shredder, the site also helps you choose
         one that's right for you.
 
     2.  Organize -- Paper Storage:  Now that you've shredded what you don't
         need, it's time to organize what's left.  Whether paper-based or saved
         on computer media, Lisa Karanek recommends archiving critical
         information safely and securely.  File paper records in folders or
         manila envelopes and clearly label and date each one.  Be as detailed
         as you like.  For example:
 
             "Evans Family 2000 Tax Records; Mark Evans' 401(k) information.
              Stored 4/17/2001."
 
         When this is done, place your records in a Fellowes Liberty(R)
         FastFold box.  Date and label the box, and be sure to list the items
         you've included.  Store the Liberty(R) box where it will be out of the
         way, yet easily accessible for reference next year.
 
     3.  Organize -- Media Storage:  If you use a bookkeeping or accounting
         software program for your taxes, store this year's financial data on a
         Zip(R) or CD.  Fellowes suggests labeling your media with the
         Fellowes/NEATO labeling program.  It's easy to use and allows you to
         custom-design family labels for CDs, floppies and Zip(R) disks for
         quick identification.  As with the paper files, the label you create
         should clearly detail the information and the date you saved it.  To
         keep everything in one place, store this media in the same box as your
         paper files.
 
     4.  Prepare.  To prepare for next April 15, Kanarek suggests organizing
         financial information consistently throughout the year.  Label and
         file check stubs, 401(k) updates, important receipts and other
         financial data in one place.  Also, keeping financial records and
         expenses on your computer or PDA with programs such as Quicken,
         QuickBooks, or Microsoft Money, makes tax reporting easier.  If you
         enter expenses on a regular basis, you can print out a category report
         at the end of the year.
 
         Towards the end of the year, choose a date to begin pre-tax
         organization, and be sure to give yourself enough time.  It may be
         helpful to write these dates in your calendar.  Fellowes suggests
         using their Slimpoint StylusPEN, part of their full line of PDA
         accessories.  The Slimpoint StylusPEN is a pen and PDA stylus in one;
         making it ideal for both paper and PDA tax time organizational needs.
 
     While nothing can take the tension out of Tax Day, Fellowes and home
 office expert Lisa Kanarek can help you survive the post tax-time whirlwind.
 With these four simple steps, your home and office will be organized and your
 important paperwork and computer media will be labeled and safely stored.  For
 more home office tips, visit Kanarek's site at http://www.homeofficelife.com .
 For more information on Fellowes and where to find the products mentioned
 here, please visit the Fellowes' web site at http://www.fellowes.com .
 
     *Projection of Returns to be Filed in Calendar Years 2000-2006, by Frank
       Zaffino; 3-9-00
      http://www.irs.gov/tax_stats/soi/other_pr.html
 
 SOURCE  Fellowes