Every year, nearly 150 million taxpayers go through the rigmarole of filing their taxes, with 5 million putting theirs through on Tax Day. Whether you set out with good intentions and you just got busy, or you had forgotten it needed doing until this week, take a deep breath – you have still got time to file your tax return, and file it well.
Try these handy tips and tricks to make sure your tax return is ready to go - even last minute.
Slow Down Your Tax Prep
Unless you have only just started reading this article on April 18, it is not too late to get your tax return done. If you start rushing through it, you are only to going to make mistakes. So, put aside some time to work steadily through your paperwork after you have read through these tips.
Check the Numbers Add Up
If you have been using a tax professional or tax software, the figures on your return are probably correct. However, these calculations are only as good as the numbers you input or provide. Therefore, it is a good idea to double check that all your data makes sense, including your totals.
Check Your Personal Numbers
One incorrect digit in your Social Security number can cause issues with your return, so check these more than once. Equally, if you are using direct deposit, you will want to check the account numbers you have entered are correct.
Answer All of the Questions
Your return can be delayed by even the simplest of things, like missing one checkbox. Make sure you have read each question thoroughly and have answered it accordingly. If you aren’t sure whether the question applies to you, the instructions provided will be able to help you.
Make Sure You Sign Your Return
When you get to the end of your return, the relief can be overwhelming, which is why quite a few taxpayers forget to add their signature at the end. However, if you do not sign it, the return will be considered inadequately filed. Equally, if your return is a joint one with your partner, make sure you have both signed it before you send it.
Send the Right Forms
There are a number of required forms when you are filing your return by paper, so you will need to attach these to the front. These include your 1099-R and W-2 forms, while other forms and schedules may need attaching to the back of your return (this will be detailed in the instructions).
Don’t Forget to Make a Payment
If, after filing your return, you owe tax, you will need to make sure you have made this payment. When paying by money or check, you will need to mail it to the address shown on your form along with the federal form 1040-V.
If you aren’t going to have your tax prep done by April 18, you can give yourself more time by requesting an extension. All you need to remember is this does not extend your payment deadline, so you will need to submit your payment along with your extension request. Finally, try and relax – it’s just one day!
Have you got any tips about filing tax returns and avoiding those last-minute stresses? We would love to hear your comments below!