Tax Time: Prepare Smart and File FastFebruary 24, 2016 - by Patrick Redo
If you usually receive a refund after filing your taxes, it’s a good bet you are filing early. No refund expected? You are probably procrastinating. Whether you are in a hurry or are worrying, the deadline to file your taxes waits for no one. Make the process faster and less painful by following some of the recommendations below:
Gather all of your tax documents:
- W-2s: This form reports an employee's annual wages and the amount of taxes withheld from his/her paycheck.
- 1099s: The IRS tax form used for taxpayers to report income, whether from work or from investments that are not salaried income,
- 1098s: A form filed with the IRS that details the amount of interest and mortgage-related expenses paid on a mortgage during the tax year.
- 1095-A: A form to report information from the government Marketplace from which you purchased health coverage.
- K-1s: Forms from entities in which you have an ownership interest (S corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, etc.)
Gather your receipts:
Gather all tax donation receipts and other documents to support proof of income and tax deductions.
Make a list of personal information:
You probably know your Social Security number, but do you know the number for each dependent you claim? Jot down this and other information (e.g., addresses of vacation homes and rental property; dates you moved; information about property you bought and sold, including dates, what you originally paid, what you received on the sale and expenses you had) needed to complete your return.
Find a copy of last year’s return:
If you use the same preparer that you used last year, likely the old return is already on hand. If you go to a new preparer, last year’s return serves as a reminder to the preparer – and you – of some items you don’t want to overlook.
- Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $62,000 or less in 2015, you are eligible for Free File.
- e-File: Use tax preparation software to prepare your tax return and send it through e-File.
- Authorized e-File Providers: Use a tax professional to prepare your tax return and send it through e-File.
Have your refund direct deposited to your account:
We recommend having your refund deposited directly to your account. You can get your refund within 10 days. You can also pay for your taxes electronically from your checking account or, use your allU.S. Debit Card.
The Bottom Line:
Start early doing prep work for your income tax so you’ll have a successful tax return experience.
Click Below for IRS Resources:
Information for individual taxpayers.
For federal tax purposes, the U.S. Armed Forces includes officers and enlisted personnel in all regular and reserve units controlled by the Secretaries of Defense, the Army, Navy, and
Air Force. The Coast Guard is also included, but not the U.S. Merchant Marine or the
American Red Cross.
Filing and paying your taxes should be as convenient as possible. That's why the IRS provides you with many helpful interactive forms, calculators, and tools.
Printable forms and instructions in PDF format.