TAMPA, Fla. (WFTS) — Tax season is officially here. Monday marks the first day the IRS processes tax returns. However, you may notice a change with your refund check this year.
Albert Johnson wasted no time. He added his to-do list to filing his tax return with Elite Tax Experts and Financial Service.
“I have a professional who does it and I used to do it myself. But all of a sudden it seemed like I couldn’t connect to the material I was reading. And I like to blame it on the fact that I’m just a bit older now I can’t understand much of it,” he said.
Johnson is not alone. There are many changes going on that can be confusing. Elite Tax Expert Dionne Stiff explained that this year is different.
“It’s been talked about a lot. The difference is there’s a lot less credits,” he said.
The past two tax seasons have included settlements primarily related to COVID-19: such as the child tax credit, settlement credit, earned income tax credit, and no more incentives.
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“There are no more. It will be similar to what it was in 2019, as opposed to how it was last year,” he added.
Stiff said you’ll see those changes right on your tax return.
“If you look back at last year’s returns, the average was about $3,200. For people taking it home and their returns, this year will be around $2,000. So that’s a significant difference.”
He added that childcare credits have also been cut in half, from a maximum of $8,000 to $4,000. In addition, in recent years, the government has not taxed the first $10,000 of unemployment or severance payments. That’s out the window now.
But it’s not all bad news.
“We do indeed have some tax breaks with inflation right now. They’ve changed some tax laws that will really help our taxpayers,” he explained.
Before you apply, here are some of the most important things to keep in mind to save you a headache down the road.
- Submit online instead of by mail
- Double check when you submit a file
- Choose direct deposit
- Wait for any tax document you need before filing
“I highly recommend not jumping. If you don’t have all your documentation, you want to make sure you have it because you can get caught up in that backlog, that backlog of 10 million returns too.”
The deadline to submit is April 18, three days later than usual.
Taxpayers who need to request a deferment have until October 16.