Keep the Tax Man at Bay

Rockstar CPA to host "extension marathon"

By BJ Lutz
|  Monday, Apr 13, 2009  |  Updated 8:00 PM CDT
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Rich and Famous -- and Dogged by the Taxman


If you don't think you're going to be able to file your federal tax return by the end of the night Wednesday, you may be able to get an automatic six month extension.

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Attention procrastinators: If you don't think you're going to be able to file your federal tax return by the end of the night Wednesday, you may be able to get an automatic six month extension, and the Rockstar CPA wants to help.

Chicago may be among the top 10 cities whose residents are regularly behind in filing their federal income tax returns, but filing for an extention can keep the tax man at bay for six months.

Anyone with two minutes to spare or a basic tax question is welcome to stop by Alliance Bakery, at 1736 W. Divison St., from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Tuesday, or Small Bar, at 2042 W. Division St. from noon until midnight on Wednesday to electronically file for an extension. During downtimes, questions submitted via the company Web site or Twitter will be answered on a first-come, first-served basis.

With just a name, address, and a Social Security number, most taxpayers will qualify for an extension, which provides extra time to file, but not extra time to pay.

The Rockstar CPA was founded by Martin Kamenski, a young entrepreneur who is doing his best to bring financial management to the artists of the creative and entertainment industries. He can speak of both worlds. Involved in both theater and accounting as an undergraduate at Marquette University, he started work at a large accounting firm before branching out on his own with Rockstar CPA.

He brought the company to Chicago three years ago and has seen the client base for the firm triple every year.

About 85 percent of the firm's clients are involved in the entertainment and theater industry; graphic designers, film producers, directors dancers, and actors of stage and film. It's a client base that Kamenski says was in need of attention.

"They have very unique situations and very unique lifestyles that -- none of them have your typical 9 to 5 day job with a regular paycheck and taxes taken out along the way, and they often don't have a lot of money, so I think that's a big reason why the market was underserved for quite a while."

Those "unique situations," Kamenski said, include the tools of the trade and deductions which may be overlooked by an accountant who doesn't understand the lifestyle.

"Somebody that works a desk job in an office can't necessarily deduct the makeup they buy at the corner store, but you get an actor who's making their money by putting that makeup on, there's a completely different story."
Twitter: @rockstarcpa
Facebook:  Rockstar CPA

Tues., April 14:
Alliance Bakery
1736 W. Divison St.
10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Wed., April 15:
Small Bar
2042 W. Division St.
12 p.m. to 11:59 p.m.

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