3 Tax Filing Options for You
These days there are so many filing options for taxpayers to get their tax returns prepared. With so many options available, you choose whichever option makes the most sense for you and your tax situation. Some are 100% free, while others come with a cost. But it’s often a cost that’s well worth it, especially for taxpayers who have more complex tax situations.
Here are the most prominent options for filing:
A Licensed Tax Professional
This includes Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) and Enrolled Agents (EAs). If you hire a tax professional, you want to make sure you’re getting an actual professional who is licensed and specializes in tax preparation (it should be their primary area of practice). It pays to do your due diligence and to make sure the professional you hire is licensed and qualified to handle your taxes.
Tax Filing Software
A common example is TurboTax. There is a huge variety of tax software on the market, with some aimed at individuals and others at businesses. Generally speaking, tax software can be easy to use, but it’s important to be aware that many come with costs. Both upfront and behind the scenes. First, you have to purchase the software, then, depending on your tax situation, possibly pay again in order to file. Be sure to read the fine print carefully before committing to any tax software.
IRS Free File
This is a great option for those who meet IRS requirements, such as any taxpayer who has an adjusted gross income of $72,000 or less. The IRS works with several partners as part of their Free File Alliance. You can find a complete list of requirements, links, and other tax resources by going to IRS.gov and putting the keywords “Free File” into the search box.
No matter which tax preparation method you choose, make sure your tax return is accurately prepared and filed on time to avoid hefty IRS penalties. A more aggressive approach is expected from the IRS this year, so stay mindful and diligent. If you expect to owe and you aren’t sure what to do next, find FREE guidance here.