By Lynne Adkins

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Last-minute congressional tax changes have forced a delay in the start of the tax filing season.

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The new tax laws didn’t take effect until January 2nd, and IRS forms had to be changed and software updated.

So now, the tax filing season won’t begin until the end of the month.

And that’s only for those with the easiest tax returns, according to Glen Shinners, a CPA in Pipersville (Bucks County), Pa.:

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“If you have a business — either a rental property or if you’re self-employed — and you’re depreciating that equipment, the IRS has already said it’s going to take a few weeks after the January 30th date to start processing those returns.”

If you use a professional preparer, he advises, make an appointment, get your information together, and get the return done, but understand that it may not get filed immediately and your refund may be delayed.

If you do the taxes yourself, Shinners suggests, make sure the software you use is up to date with the latest changes.

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