You know how the saying goes, there are two things we can be certain of, death and taxes. It’s that time of the year again, time to gather documents and settle down to do the taxes, or haul your box of papers to your CPA. Yes, tax time is upon us.
It can get complicated, if you have children, or own a small business, or are selling a home. This year, possibly more so, since the taxes paid on unemployment could be an issue. Needless to say it can be a bit overwhelming. As if we haven’t had enough to be overwhelmed by this year!
Certainly there are paid tax services that can help you, but there is also free help available, especially if you don’t have a really complicated situation or your income is a certain level.
If you are comfortable doing your own taxes with software, the IRS free file site at https://www.irs.gov/filing/free-file-do-your-federal-taxes-for-free has a look up tool that can help you find free software. Boy, that’s a link you can tell is made up by the government! If you go to www.irs.gov, there’s an easy to find button right there on the main page to get you there too.
Many communities have volunteers that can help with taxes as well. To find one of those, go to https://www.irs.gov/individuals/free-tax-return-preparation-for-qualifying-taxpayers. Look at THAT link! The short cut to that one is to type VITA in the search box on the www.irs.gov page.
If you choose to use a paid tax preparation service, do a little homework to protect yourself from a predatory situation. These might be places that are really pushing the refund anticipation loans, or they are only open during tax season. Refund anticipation loans are like paying someone else interest to borrow your own money. If you e-file, the turn around is very fast to get your refund, especially if you don’t wait until the last minute. The IRS says 21 days or less, but in my experience, it’s usually around a week or so.
For this year, the news just came out that for most taxpayers the filing deadline has been extended to May 17th, 2020. If you’re expecting a refund, get your return done sooner that later for that quick turnaround.
If you are expecting a big refund, and want some help planning what to do or if you ended up having to pay in on your taxes, the counselors at the Center for Financial Resources can help you decide what comes next. Contact us at 1-888-258-2227 or at www.lsssd.org to make an appointment.
Written by Sylvia Selgestad, Financial Counselor and Educator
Photo credit: http://www.tuscon.com
LSS Center for Financial Resources
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705 East 41st Street, Suite 100 |Sioux Falls SD 57105-6047
605-330-2700 or 888-258-2227
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