Filing taxes can be a nerve-wracking process. You want to make sure you’re taking all the deductions available to you, but you also want to make sure you’re filing correctly. Some people choose to go with an accounting firm to handle taxes, and some use a program to do theirs on their own. We are really grateful to have an accountant in the family who handles our taxes for us.
If you’re handling your taxes on your own this year, there are a lot of good resources online for guiding you. Just make sure you consider the source before you take advice from any online entity. The IRS actually has a really impressive pool of Tax Tips, with articles on everything from “Tax Tips Regarding Income” to “IRS Reminds Parents of Ten Tax Benefits.” I was impressed with the wealth of information provided on this site alone – and you can definitely feel confident in any information you pull from the IRS directly. They even have a smartphone app called IRS2Go that allows you interact with the IRS using your mobile device. The app can help you get your refund status and tax updates. IRS2Go is available for the iPhone or iTouch and the Android. Isn’t that cool?
Most importantly, though, make sure you don’t have unfiled tax returns! I remember seeing on the news that a winner of Survivor hadn’t paid taxes on his winnings, had to hire a tax attorney, and was going to jail. The penalties for not filing taxes are way too serious – make sure you get it taken care of! I always think it’s better to get it done as early as possible so it’s out of your hair and one less thing on your plate. If it seems really complicated, go to a professional. You may spend money having your taxes prepared, but the peace of mind will be worth it.
How do you handle taxes? Do you file on your own, or use a professional?