Feature Articles: Taxes
Avoid headaches, prepare tax return early
Reviewed and used with special permission from the IRS by: Brenda Procter, M.S., State Specialist & Instructor, Personal Financial Planning, University of Missouri Extension
Earlier is better when it comes to working on your taxes. The IRS encourages everyone to get a head start on tax preparation. Not only do you avoid the last-minute rush, but early filers also get a faster refund.
There are seven easy ways to get a good jump on your taxes long before the April 15 deadline rolls around:
- Gather your records in advance. Make sure you have all the
records you need, including W-2s and 1099s. Don’t forget to
save a copy for your files.
- Get the right forms. They are always available on the IRS
under Forms and Publications.
- Take your time. Don’t forget to leave room for a coffee
break when filling out your tax return. Rushing can mean making
a mistake and that can be expensive!
- Double-check your math and Social Security number. These
are among the most common errors on tax returns. Taking care
on these reduces your chances of hearing from the IRS.
- Get the fastest refund. When you file early, you get your
refund faster. Using e-filing with direct deposit might get
you a refund in as little as 10 to 15 days.
- E-filing is easy. E-filing catches math problems, provides
confirmation your return has been received and gives you a faster
- Don’t panic. If you have a problem or a question, remember the IRS is there to help. Try the IRS website at http://www.irs.gov/ or call the toll-free customer service number at 1-800-829-1040.
Source: IRS Tax Tip 2006-01
Last update: Monday, January 28, 2013