Avoid Making These 10 Tax Return Filing Mistakes
Author: Miod & Company
Date: April 14, 2022
Average Time Reading: 5 minutes
When tax season rolls around, naturally, stress levels rise. Figuring out arrangements for getting a tax professional, paying for tax software, or doing your taxes completely on your own can become stressful, especially as time is running out. If you file your taxes returns correctly, you can be rewarded for a year of hard work.
Here are ten common mistakes that potentially could delay your tax return from weeks to even months:
1. Leaving a Tax Return Unsigned
It may seem like common sense, but many people file tax returns without signing them. This is a huge but common mistake. There can even be a penalty for unsigned tax returns from the IRS website: “Unsigned income tax returns will not be accepted for processing; delinquency penalty generally will not be imposed on timely filed unsigned income tax returns.”
Simple errors look easy to solve with the last review, but if you leave them unfixed, you risk being late and incurring additional penalties.
2. Wrong Social Security Number
Submitting your tax return with an erroneous SSN will result in a canceled return. It should appear precisely as-is on your Social Security Identity card. If not, it can result in a lengthy and arduous process to correct your SSN mistake.
3. Outdated Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN)
ITINs are ID numbers that are assigned to individual taxpayers in lieu of an SSN. Those who either do not qualify for or do not yet have a Social Security Number receive these identification numbers. This includes people such as foreign workers, nonresidents, and children of those previously mentioned who have worked enough to need to file their taxes.
4. Simple Errors and Typos
Misspellings, incorrect math, using the wrong digit: these minor mistakes can afford you a painful and unnecessary correction process. Especially when it comes to important identification information like your full legal name and your net income, these mistakes will not slide. Make sure that every figure and spelling is correct to save you time in the long run.
5. Taking the Automatic Standard Deduction
Although it may seem the simplest and most practical way to get your taxes done, taking automatic standard deductions can be a red flag. When factors like expenses and mileage could even award you more money if you itemize your deductions, it is best to do the work and provide the receipts.
Along with this, you can also miss out by not taking deductions that you can claim. Avoiding putting in the work for the sake of simplicity can actually cost you money in the long run. It is very unlikely that the government will audit you for write-offs that you feel like you may claim, so you shouldn’t miss out on them.
6. Incorrect Bank Account Number
Make a mistake on your bank account number. You may not see your return for weeks or months. Most people choose direct deposit, but an incorrect bank account or routing number can delay your payment for months.
7. Putting Information in the Incorrect Place
Tax returns are notorious for being very particular about where you put information. Ensure that every piece of information is in the correct corresponding location, or it can void your entire tax return. You may be familiar with some information, or you can make an incorrect assessment
8. Filing Under the Incorrect Status or Not Explaining Your Purpose
Single, married jointly, married separately? If you file under the wrong status, you can sabotage your entire return. If you correct your return, you must state what your reasons are. Tell the IRS what your situation is in clear terms.
9. Making Checks Out To The Wrong Address
Misaddressing your tax return can be the easiest way to make receiving your tax return a difficult experience. If you are filing on paper, ensure that you are mailing it to the right place or it can be sent back or even lost, causing a huge headache.
10. Getting It In On Time
When the beginning of the year comes around, plenty of ad campaigns and warnings are circulating that tax deadlines are quickly approaching. It is best to err on the side of caution when submitting your return because late returns will incur fees and penalties up to 25%.
To help avoid these common mistakes and get your money on time, contact the helpful and experienced tax professionals at Miod and Company for all of your tax needs. Tax returns can be difficult and time-consuming for those who have not certified tax preparers. Avoid these common big mistakes, and more minor errors, by using our trusted staff to do your taxes.
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