If you haven’t filed your federal tax return yet, you’re not alone.
According to the IRS about 20% of taxpayers wait to file until the last two weeks of tax season.
The clock is ticking.. and the deadline to file federal tax returns this year is April 17th.
So if you still need to file, here are a few tips to help make your tax life a little easier.
- Make sure you have all the necessary documents:
- A W-2 form from your employer
- 1099 forms from other sources of income
- A 1098 form showing mortgage interest and property taxes paid if you’re a homeowner
- Form 1098-E showing student loan interst paid if you have federal loans
- Form 1095 showing health insurance coverage
- Receipts for charitable contributions
- Know which health coverage form you need
- 1095-A will be sent to you if you get your health insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace
- 1095-B if coverage is purchased from insurer
- 1095-C if you’re covered by an employer plan
- Reference last year’s return
- You can use your last return filed as a benchmark for this year’s return
- File Electronically
- If you make less than $64,000 you can file taxes online with IRS Free File.
- If you make more than that, there are a number of reasonably priced tax preparation software programs you can use
- Take breaks and beware of errors
- Walk away every once and a while, don’t try to do your taxes all in one sitting. Come back with a fresh set of eyes
- Double check your return, or have someone else you trust review it too to avoid mistakes.
Even if you can’t afford to pay your taxes, make sure to file on time. You can request an installment plan from the IRS but it may come with a late penalty or interest fees.
For more information, head to the IRS’s website.