13 On Your Side: Preparing taxes online
It's time to start thinking taxes, the IRS has kicked off tax season by opening up free electronic filing. Every year the Better Business Bureau gets thousands of complaints from people just like you about tax preparers.
News 13's Jon Chrisos is on your side with some important tips.
Thursday’s the deadline for employers to mail out those W-2s, detailing earnings for the year. About 80% of us will use a tax preparer or tax software to help us file our taxes. But consumer advocates warn to be careful when you are picking your tax preparation help.
If it isn't done right, you can get hit with headaches and fines and fees. The common complaint heard from the better business bureau is that the tax preparer made mistakes in their return which cost the taxpayer money. While most tax professionals provide quality service, in the end, the ultimate responsibility falls on you the taxpayer.
It's important to note, whether you do your own taxes or you have paid someone to do them for you, the IRS states you are responsible for all the information that is given
Here are some tips from the BBB on tax preparation and how to find a trustworthy preparer:
Ask around, get referrals from friends and family.
Don't fall for the promise of big refunds. Be wary of any service that promises larger refunds than the competition.
Make sure they have a preparer tax ID number. All preparers who are being paid for their service must have one.
And always read the contract carefully.
If you make $57,000 or less, you can file your federal taxes online using free tax software. Some also support state tax returns for free.
For more resources, follow the links:
Thursday, January 31 2013, 07:23 PM EST
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