Tax Day 2022: Quick Tips To Make Filing Easier

Woman in her 30s filling out tax information online.
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If you waited until the last day to file your income taxes, take solace: You probably have plenty of company. The 2022 tax season has been especially kind to procrastinators because the filing deadline is April 18 instead of the usual April 15, thanks to the Emancipation Holiday in the District of Columbia.

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If you are filing on the last day, it’s especially important to make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible. Here are some tips to make filing your tax returns easier.

File Electronically

Filing your returns electronically rather than manually can help you cut down on mistakes, according to the IRS. Doing so also ensures that your return will be processed faster. Use electronic filing options such as IRS Free File or commercial tax software. In many cases the math will be done for you. You might also be flagged about missing information or common tax errors.

Double-Check Your Work

One of the most common mistakes taxpayers make is not putting in the right information. This can range from entering wrong names and Social Security numbers to simple math errors. Even though you might feel rushed, it’s still important to take a couple minutes to double-check your information to ensure it’s correct before submitting your return.

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If your return is wrong, it will get kicked back to you and you’ll have to file it again — and maybe face a penalty.

Gather All Your Documents

Before sitting down to do your taxes, make sure you have all the documents you need to complete the return. These include all 2021 income forms for you and your spouse, if applicable (W-2, 1099, Interest Income, etc.); IRS correspondence such as letters showing your amounts for Economic Impact Payments or Advance Child Tax Credit payments you received in 2021; and documents detailing deductible expenses such as mortgage interest, home repairs, home insurance, and the like.

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Claim Your Child Tax Credits

You might be eligible for child tax credits of $3,000 to $3,600 per child for the 2021 tax year. Many taxpayers received half of their available credits as advance CTC payments between July and December. You can claim the remaining half using Schedule 8812, according to Experian.

Reconcile Your Stimulus Payments and Recovery Rebate Credit

If you received a third stimulus payment last year, you should have received IRS Letter 6475 documenting it, or you can get payment details by checking your tax transcript. This information helps you determine whether to claim the Recovery Rebate Credit on your 2021 tax return. The credit is for taxpayers who still haven’t received the full amount of stimulus due to them in the previous three rounds of stimulus payments.

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About the Author

Vance Cariaga is a London-based writer, editor and journalist who previously held staff positions at Investor’s Business Daily, The Charlotte Business Journal and The Charlotte Observer. His work also appeared in Charlotte Magazine, Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal and Business North Carolina magazine. He holds a B.A. in English from Appalachian State University and studied journalism at the University of South Carolina. His reporting earned awards from the North Carolina Press Association, the Green Eyeshade Awards and AlterNet. In addition to journalism, he has worked in banking, accounting and restaurant management. A native of North Carolina who also writes fiction, Vance’s short story, “Saint Christopher,” placed second in the 2019 Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition. Two of his short stories appear in With One Eye on the Cows, an anthology published by Ad Hoc Fiction in 2019. His debut novel, Voodoo Hideaway, was published in 2021 by Atmosphere Press.
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