Tax returns can be a stressful, confusing mess. It may be tempting simply to shrug off worries about filing errors — however, it is important not to underestimate the IRS. The Bureau of the Department of the Treasury is known for its ability to catch even the smallest mistakes and to penalize those who made them.
While the best tax lawyers can possibly get penalties and interest charges removed or reduced, it is far better to avoid these mistakes in the first place. Here are some of the errors which frequently get people in trouble with the IRS — take extra care to avoid them next tax season.
- Trying to do taxes by hand
There is a reason electronic filing services are so popular: they reduce mistakes. Companies such as TurboTax walk you through your federal and state tax returns step-by-step, asking important questions most of us would not think of, and checking for mistakes along the way. If something seems amiss, the software will bring you directly to the offending form to double-check the entries and correct any misinformation. If you are worried that the cost of these services will offset your return, fear not; many e-filing services are free, and if your income is below $58,000, the IRS itself will provide software pro bono. If you attempted to do your returns by hand and made a mistake, make sure to hire the best tax lawyer available to help rectify it.
- Thinking the filing deadline is inflexible
For many, tax returns can feel like a desperate scramble. The overwhelming nature of the task makes it easy to put off indefinitely, closer and closer to that April 15 deadline. In this event, the answer is not to rush the process and likely introduce a number of mistakes to your return. Instead, fill out form 4868 and submit it to the IRS electronically or by mail. Upon its reception, filers receive an extra half of a year to complete their tax returns.
- Making errors on credits and deductions
An estimated 119,853,012 individuals received refunds in 2017. If you filed last-minute and skipped over credits and deductions, you may have missed out. The best tax lawyers and experts note that it is most often education credits that filers miss out on, and at a crucial time in life when money is probably tight.
If you are in trouble with the IRS, make the call to our offices today.