If it’s your first time tax filing, you’re most likely intimidated. Between the confusing language and the myriad of complex tax laws, it can be difficult to determine if you’re doing everything correctly. Steven M. Vogt, CPA, understands that filing taxes for the first time can be confusing, even when your return is relatively straightforward. That’s why he offers his clients in Chandler, AZ, the following advice, which can serve as a guide to first-time filers unsure of the process.
First Time Tax Filing? What You Need to Know
Make Sure You Have the Right Documents
First and foremost, you’ll need a W-2 from any workplace where you were considered a full-time employee—if you changed jobs, you’ll need W-2s from each employer. If you’ve done any freelance or contract work, you’ll also need a 1099 form from those entities. Any other income will need to be reported as well. For instance, if you made money on investments in the past year, those earnings will also need to be reported.
Research Deductions & Credits
Most taxpayers are eligible for some kind of deduction or credit. The Earned Income Tax Credit is available to people whose income is lower than the average. If you’re currently job hunting, you might be able to deduct expenses related to travel or other costs. There may be other deductions that apply to your individual tax situation, so be sure to talk with a professional to make sure you have everything covered.
Take Your Time, But Don’t Delay
While some people rush through tax preparation to receive their refunds faster, this can easily lead to mistakes. Get started on your taxes as early as possible and make sure you have all the appropriate documentation at your disposal before filing. While it’s important to be thorough in your income tax preparation, don’t take too long. If you miss the deadline and fail to file for an extension, you could be subject to penalties.
Providing Chandler clients the benefit of more than two decades of experience, Steven M. Vogt, CPA, can assist those tax filing for the first time, as well as clients with complex situations who may have questions. Call (480) 732-9898 today to speak with someone about filing an appointment. You can also like them on Facebook to stay up-to-date on all the latest happenings.