10 Tax Questions You Probably Don't Ask

Are there new tax laws I should be aware of this year?
The ins and outs of tax law can be difficult to keep up with. © Garsya/iStockphoto

Congress and the IRS always seem to have new rules, regulations and laws written in obscure legalese that the average person or small business owner can't possibly understand. Fortunately, that's what your accountant is for: to translate the mind-boggling government-speak into plain English and figure out how it applies to your tax position.

Generally, when new tax laws are passed, they don't go into effect for a year or more. So, ask your accountant what might be coming up that could affect your taxes. There may be things -- like the simplified home office deduction passed in 2013 -- that will make your life easier but that require you to keep track of and document year-round.