COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — If you haven’t yet, time is running out to file your tax return.
The deadline to submit returns for most taxpayers is April 18. But before you do, there are things to consider and things to look out for, so you get what you’re owed and don’t end up owing more.
“This is really critical money, and we want to get that money to people,” said IRS Spokesman Luis Garcia.
The easiest and quickest way to get your tax refund, Garcia said, is by filing your return electronically.
“The best thing that people can do for the IRS, for themselves, is to file electronically for direct deposit,” Garcia said.
To do that, Garcia said you’ll need your W-2 or 10-99 forms. And, for some of you this year, Letter 6419 — which applies to the Advanced Child Tax Credit.
“If anything is missing, you’ll get that additional amount, or if you received the full amount, that it’s properly represented,” said Garcia.
And Letter 6475, which tells the IRS how much you received in stimulus payments.
“The third round of stimulus payment came through last year, and for most people, you don’t have to do anything,” said Garcia. “It’s not taxable, you don’t have to claim that stimulus payment.”
That stimulus payment, changes to the child tax credit and unemployment benefits could lead to a lot of confusion while filing. That’s why IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent Tony Westendorf said it’s important to have an experienced, trusted tax preparer help you.
“Always have the preparer review the return with you,” said Westendorf. “One thing we see is return preparers who do not sign a return. All paid preparers should be signing returns that they were paid to prepare this return.”
And make sure that the return is as accurate as possible. Mistakes could delay your refund, or you could end up owing the IRS.
“Know what’s on your return, because you’re ultimately responsible for what’s on the return,” said Westendorf.
Westendorf also said it’s helpful if your preparer is available year-round in case the IRS has questions about your return. And if the IRS needs to reach out to you, agents will never call you, demand legal action, or send an email asking you to click on a link. That’s a scam. Any communication will come in a letter in the mail.