Did you know that the deadline for to file taxes is actually April, 18th this year? Since April, 15th is a Saturday and Emancipation Day is a legal holiday in D.C., the date has been pushed back to April, 18th. Most people would agree that there is some degree of added stress surrounding tax time. Money, for many Americans, causes stress throughout the year but when the time comes to file taxes, those concerns are often highlighted. With spring and warmer weather around the corner, the time to prepare and file your taxes is now so that you can enjoy a stress-free tax season. Prepare, be attentive to details, start early, and sue the right resources and you will have a smooth tax season.

Preparation is the key, start the process early. As you are preparing your taxes, you may have to provide information and documents you may not have immediately on hand. Gathering them may take time, so start early and do not procrastinate. If you are filing jointly with a spouse and/or dependents, reach out to them to get the necessary paperwork early. Things will go more smoothly if all of your tax records are organized and ready to go when you start to file.

Use available resources. Tax software is relatively inexpensive and can serve as a great tool, giving you step-by-step guidance and allowing you to provide the necessary and accurate information on your return. The IRS also offers free tax refund software called Free File for those who earned $64,000 or less last year. For more information on Free File go to irs.gov. If you decide to use a professional tax preparer, be sure to check their qualifications, reputation, and expertise before using their service. Remember that you are handing them your sensitive personal information including your social security number.

Plan ahead. As an income earner, you may owe taxes to the IRS. It is encouraged to start saving a little bit extra now in case you have additional taxes to pay.

Information to have ready when you file your taxes:

  • Proof of Identification – if you are using a tax preparer
  • Filing Status and Residency Status
  • Social Security Numbers – for you, spouse and any dependents
  • Copy of your past tax return
  • Statements of earned wages (W-2, W-2G, 1099-R, etc.)
  • Statements of interest and dividends
  • Proof of any tax credits, tax deductions, or tax exclusions

Sources: IRS, Money News. The Health Tip of the Week is for educational purposes only. For additional information, consult your physician. Please feel free to copy and distribute this health resource.