It’s a brand-new year, which means that tax season is upon the nation. You still have until April to figure out your taxes, but the new laws may slow your progress this year. Don’t worry about your 2019 taxes. Simply follow a few tips in order to ease any tension. The new rules will make sense as you get accustomed to the enhanced forms and various deductions.
Get started on your taxes with these tips and tricks.
1) Don’t Worry About the Shutdown
There are IRS workers who’re not being paid or showing up to work because of the government shutdown. However, the majority of people who file won’t start their taxes until February at the earliest. The forms that are necessary to complete your taxes, such as W-2 forms, aren’t even mailed out yet.
Most businesses have until the end of January to mail out the information. The shutdown will probably have a solution by the time you can start and complete your 2018 taxes. If the shutdown does continue, the federal government will have an alternative. Worrying about the shutdown at all shouldn’t be at the top of your to-do list.
2) Start as Soon as You Can
To make your filing process easier, start your taxes as soon as you can. Familiarize yourself with the new forms. Determine if you need additional schedules because some rules have changed. When you start early, you can complete the forms at a leisurely pace. If you feel overwhelmed, stop for the day and continue the next day. Rushing through the taxes will just frustrate the average taxpayer.
3) Ask Many Questions
The tax reform is the largest overall of the system in decades. There will be questions that must be asked. Don’t hesitate to seek out specific answers to your situation. From dependents to business write-offs, these calculations are different and apply to various situations now. Look for answers from reputable, online sites or consultations with professionals. There will be a solid answer so that your taxes are as accurate as possible.
4) Look at Your Withholding
As soon as the tax reform became law, your paycheck changed for the better. You may have fallen into a new tax bracket, which meant that less money was taken from the income. This situation appears to be positive, but it can lower your refund in 2019. In fact, the taxes taken out of your 2018 paychecks may not be enough to cover your bill. Change your withholding on the paycheck if you see a tax discrepancy this season.
5) Decide Between Itemizing and Standard Deductions
Many people itemized their taxes in the past because the allowed deductions gave them a reprieve from a huge tax bill. However, the new rules have changed this scenario. The standard deduction has risen for both single and married filers. Choose your deduction carefully this year.
6) Know if You Have the Proper ID Numbers
If you don’t have a Social Security number, be aware of the alternative identification numbers that can expire. As you prepare for the 2019 tax season, verify that your ID number is valid with the IRS. If it must be updated, prioritize that task now. Your taxes cannot be submitted without the proper ID numbers added to the forms.
Whether you meet with a CPA or complete this year’s taxes on your own, always double-check the numbers and forms. Mistakes can happen. It’s always better to discover them now instead of waiting for the IRS to check you. The new tax laws will take some time to get used to, and 2020’s taxes will be much easier as a result.