Category Archives: Tax Help

The Government Can Take Your Tax Refund

Taxpayers are filing their taxes early this year to avoid having an identity thief file their return before they do. But what is surprising some is that the government keeps their tax refund and uses it to pay down their student loan debt when they are in default. Called the Treasury Offset Program, the Department of Education is able to take Social Security payments and tax refunds and apply them to outstanding debt that you have not been paying.

Experts in the field say the Department of Education is required to notify you ahead of time if they intend to apply this offset program to your funds. Within this notification are rules and what you can do to avoid this happening to your tax refund at tax time.

You can request a hearing if your loan was not in default when the funds were taken and have them sent to you. Another thing you can do is to adjust your withholding on the w-9 form. This tells your employer to not take as much out of your checks each pay period. This will give you more money during the year to pay your student loan payments, and reduce your refund at the end of the year.

Also, set up a payment option with your student loan that you can afford. Getting in default of you student loan causes problems in your financial life that you would rather avoid. Your credit will be affected and the interest you need to pay on other loans is likely to go up.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)

How To Use The IRS To Get Free Tax Help

A lot of people require help when filing taxes. Deciding on the forms to fill, number of dependents and how to claim your tax refund are some of the prevalent concerns that taxpayers face.

However, there exists numerous methods that can be helpful during the process. Below are some of the best techniques and practices that you can employ on top of using TurboTax 2014.

English: YOKOSUKA, Japan (Feb. 10, 2009) Volun...

English: YOKOSUKA, Japan (Feb. 10, 2009) Volunteer income tax assistance (VITA) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The IRS website (www.irs.gov) is a one stop shop for tax payers. “1040 Central” is especially beneficial to those who are experiencing difficulties with filing their taxes. It will give you tips, guidelines and a lot of useful information. Moreover, the page has links to other important webpages such as the latest news and FAQs.

Online tools such as the Interactive Tax Assistant and IRS Tax Map can also be useful in giving you solutions to some of your questions and problems. “Where’s My Tax Refund” will show you the status of your refund while the Earned Income Tax Credit Assistant can tell your eligibility for the tax credit. All this information is available 24/7.

Another great tool found on the IRS website is the Free File. There are various software under Free File such as TurboTax 2014 that you can use to file your taxes electronically. Filing taxes electronically is not only convenient, but guarantees you faster refunds especially if used with direct deposit.

Free File is very useful for those who may have earned less than $58,000 in the last year. You can also use TurboTax 2014 with the same limit if you are in the military. The software has a simple interactive interface with a procedural approach that makes it easy to use for anyone. Those earning more than $58,000 can use Free File Fillable Forms to compute their taxes online.

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is a program that enables people who make under $52,000 yearly to file their taxes online freely. Tax Counselling for the Elderly is also critical in helping older members (60 years and above) of the community file their taxes. Furthermore, it can be useful for those with low to moderate earnings.

These VITA programs are available everywhere within the country. To find one closest to you, simply search for VITA on the IRS website and select “Free Tax Return Preparation for You”. You can call 800-906-9887 to find out the same information too.

Lastly, those who do not have access to the internet can call the IRS on 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676) to get tax forms and publications. You can call 800-829-4477 to know the status of your refund and listen to more than 150 recorded messages on different tax related issues.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.5/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)