It’s NOT The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year.

Nobody likes tax season. From late-night comics and memes to the family dinner table, no one holds back their feelings about kicking up to Uncle Sam. It could be the last thing left uniting all Americans – extreme dislike of tax season.

What seems to fuel much of America’s ill will towards tax time isn’t what’s due or what’s owed, but the preparation required for it. Tracking down old receipts, gathering all the necessary forms, and waiting impatiently for statements to arrive in the mail. Then, either settling in to do the math or finding someone to do it for us. 

The truth is, filing taxes will never be stress-free, but tax preparation can be less stress-inducing. Adding a little more proactivity and organization to the process can make a big difference. Here are a few helpful suggestions from CFTCU on how you can make tax season prep less taxing:

File Earlier, Not Later.

We’re not judging, but many of us wait until late winter/early spring to start tax prep (even though tax season began officially on January 1st). Experts recommend we file our tax returns as soon as all the relevant information is collected – remember those receipts and statements? – to complete the form. On the plus side, that’s the fastest way to get a refund. But even if there’s no refund and money is owed, filing early provides more time to plan and budget.

Have The Right Paperwork.

Remember Roz in “Monsters, Inc” and how she pestered Mike Wazowski for never having the correct paperwork? Well, when it comes to the IRS don’t be like Mike – have the right paperwork. That includes any W-2s, 1099s, and letters from the IRS about stimulus checks or child tax credit payments you might have received during the year. Did you trade stocks or cryptocurrencies? You’ll want that documentation handy, too.

Follow The Changes.

Did you know taxes are due April 18th this year? Or about the expanded child and dependent tax care credit which, if you’re planning on claiming, requires saved receipts for what you spent on child care last year (you may have received a letter from the IRS about this, which you saved…right?). To stay current with all the latest changes and updates to this year’s new tax changes, visit the IRS website.

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help.

Accountants and tax consultants might be the only people who look forward to tax season. Hiring one could be a relief and a wise investment (at the very least you’ll get one more festive card this holiday season). They’ll compile all the necessary information, ensure your taxes are accurate and that you are claiming the benefits you’re eligible for. 

File Online.

The IRS is struggling to process paper returns and they’ve gone on record saying filing online is the fastest and easiest way to submit your information. With this in mind, Common Trust Federal Credit Union, in partnership with Love My Credit Union, is offering special member savings with TurboTax. Filing online with TurboTax, members can save up to $15 on federal products and are guaranteed to get their taxes done right and their maximum refund. To learn more, click here.