New to tax filing and want to learn where to start? The Follow are 3 main ways to file your taxes.
- File your taxes manually, filling out a form called a 1040, according to instructions provided by the IRS; and mail it to the IRS, along with any payments you owe.
- Use a tax software program or the website of a service like TurboTax or H&R Block. The service will walk you through a series of questions about your income and potential deductions, fill out your 1040, and (if you so choose) file it electronically for you.
- Get professional help from an accountant or tax preparer, who will work with you to maximize your refund and fill out your tax return on your behalf.
What is the IRS?
The IRS is a revenue service responsible for collecting taxes and enforcing the Internal Revenue Code. It is also responsible for holding taxpayers accountable for challenging the law. If there is any scrutiny found on an individual’s or organization’s tax records and financial information, they get “audited” which is a way of saying, that the person will be under investigation to make sure they have paid their dues and reported finances honestly.
What is a 1040 form?
Form 1040 is the standard federal income tax form used to report an individual’s gross income (e.g., money, goods, property, and services). It is also known as “the long form” because it is longer than the shorter 1040A and 1040EZ Tax Forms. Also unlike the other tax forms, IRS Form 1040 allows taxpayers to claim numerous expenses and tax credits, itemize deductions, and adjust income. This form is due by April 15th unless you apply for an automatic tax extension. Otherwise, you may get charged penalties/late fees.
What is a tax software program?
Tax software are digital online platforms that help you file your taxes. Most if not all, come with a fee.