At this time of year, filing tax returns ranks right up there with public speaking as among the scariest things we have to do in life. Liberty Tax Service advises taxpayers to take a deep breath and dive into tax preparation early. Here are five good reasons:
Get money back
Taxpayers who believe they have a tax refund coming, shouldn’t let the government keep their money any longer than it legally can. Starting this year, taxpayers who claim the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit cannot receive their tax refunds before February 15. According to the IRS, early filers who use direct deposit can expect their refund within 21 days. Last year, the average refund topped $2,500.
Fraud or identity theft
Becoming a victim of identity theft has crept into the top five fears most of us have, and technology advances have escalated those concerns. Taxpayers who file their tax return early are less likely to become a victim of a fraudster trying to collect a refund in their name. Here’s why: Criminals tend to file fraudulent returns early, so they can get to the IRS before the real taxpayer.
Taxpayers who have experienced a life-changing family event in 2016, such as marriage, divorce, a baby, or other family transition, will have a different tax return this year. Getting tax advice early can help taxpayers get their return prepared in advance of the April 18 deadline.
We’re not suggesting that taxpayers file early if they owe money. Instead, it makes sense to get the tax preparation out of the way so taxpayers know precisely what they owe and can figure out how they’re going to pay before the tax deadline.
Here’s the bottom line … the sooner a taxpayer files his or her income tax return, the sooner the taxpayer will be free of the responsibility.
To find a local Liberty Tax office, call 866-871-1040 or visit www.libertytax.com. Liberty Tax does take appointments, but they are not necessary.
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