Co-Parenting and Tax Returns

I’ll say this in my experience with tax refunds and parents with children. Most cases, the mother takes care of the child(ren) most if not every day. New clothes, colds, doctors visits, bedtime stories, homework, sleepovers, school trip money, juice in the middle of the night etc. Also, daycare is not cheap Usually, because of all of this, the mother gets most if not all of the tax refund money.

Depending on the relationship, some mothers may share a portion of the refund. Especially, if the father is very involved but the child(ren) doesn’t live with him.

Some may even trade who claims the child(ren) for a particular year. Even year is for the mother and odd year is the father. If there are multiple children, they may split who claims which child.

But for the most part, mothers claim the child(ren) and keep the refund to use for the remainder of the year or so.

Now every so often, the couples hate each other and they race to the tax preparers’ office to file the return.

Here’s how the IRS decides who gets to claim the child(ren) and get the refund.

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A Checklist and Books from TaxAssurances for the Tax Season

Tax season is here and TaxAssurances is here to help tax payers prepare for it. Every year we give our clients a checklist for all the information we need in order to prepare their returns. Here is that checklist.

TAX PREP CHECKLIST

At TaxAssurances we also recognize that many people want to prepare their own tax return. Here are two books we’ve published to help.
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The first book, Top 12 Tax Deductions You Might Have Missed: Tax Tips For People Who Do Their Own Federal Taxes is for tax payers that file simple tax returns but want to make sure they take advantage of all the tax benefits possible.

The second book, Top 23 Tax Deductions You Might Have Missed: Tax Tips For People Who Do Their Own Federal Taxes is for tax payers that file complex and complicated tax returns.

Both books help self filers make sure they uncover all the possible deductions they have available. We hope they help.

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Benefits Of Reviewing Prior Year Tax Returns

IRS4Did you have your tax preparer look at your returns for the last few years? It’s a good idea for taxpayers to review their returns every year. In many cases the review may reveal missed credits and deductions taxpayers may be entitled to that ultimately give them a bigger tax refund.

Review Last Three Tax Returns

This past tax season I reviewed the last three tax returns for one of my clients. In the end, she was grateful I did. Not only had she done her own tax returns without knowing all of the educational credits she was entitled to but she also received bad advice from a co-worker about the number of exemptions/allowances to claim on her paycheck.

She did take some of the educational credits she was entitled to but because she didn’t realize the true extent (and calculation) of the tax law and credit available, she didn’t take the full credit.

Positive Review Results

The review I did revealed that extra unclaimed credit and resulted in her owing the IRS $300 instead of $1900. A huge difference, especially considering she hadn’t started to pay those taxes because she didn’t have the money.

We also fixed the number of exemptions/allowances on her paycheck based on her circumstances.

Not Just “Plugging Numbers into a Computer”

After going through this review process my client realized that filing taxes was not simply “plugging numbers into a computer.” She realized that she was good at her job but when it came to tax law and taking advantage of all the credits and deductions she was entitled to, she needed an expert.

She also helped the effort by telling me everything that happened in her financial life over the past three years, no matter how small the event may have seemed. This was important because given the complexity of the American population; the IRS has built in a number of credits and deductions to help taxpayers from different walks of life. Preparers know more about these benefits than taxpayers.

In the end for many Americans preparing taxes may seem like an easy undertaking of just plugging numbers into a computer but if they are not careful, they may be missing out on credits and deductions they are entitled to. Working with a qualified tax preparer can help ensure the right credits and deductions are taken.

 

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