Tax Season FAQs
Tax season is around the corner, and everyone here at Dowd Insurance Agency wants to make sure our clients have everything they need in order to properly file taxes. Review the most frequently asked tax return questions and answers below to make sure you're prepared for the 2020 tax season.
Should I hire a tax preparer?
Filing your taxes is much easier now with all the software that can walk you through each step of the process. If you only have your W-2, your return should be simple enough to file on your own. However, if you are filing for the first time or have had a change in your filing status you may benefit from working with a preparer initially.
Small business owners and those who are self-employed have many complex rules regarding work deductions and filing requirements. While business tax software is available, it can be easy to overlook tax write-offs for those that are unfamiliar with the tax code. In these situations you are typically going to do much better with a tax preparer.
How do I determine my filing status?
You can determine your tax filing status on the IRS website.
When should I file my taxes? Should I file early?
Taxes should be filed no later than April 15 each year.
If you can't file your taxes on time, you must file Form 4868 for an automatic 6-month extension. Filing your tax return early may help eliminate the need to file an extension. Another common reason to file early is to receive a faster tax refund. Or if you expect to owe taxes you will have extra time to pay as you do not have to pay taxes you owe until the filing deadline.
Where do I file my taxes?
You can find out where to file taxes in your state by visiting the IRS website. You can also file your taxes online.
What should I do if my address has changed?
You will need to notify the IRS of your change of address. There are several ways to do notify the IRS of your change of address, including:
IRS Form: Form 8822, Change of Address or Form 8822-B, Change of Address or Responsible Party - Business.
Tax Return: Use your new address when you file
Written Statement: Send a signed written statement with your full name, old address, new address, and social security number, ITIN, or EIN. Mail your signed statement to the address where you filed your last tax return.
Oral Notification: Tell the IRS in person or by telephone. Have your full name, address, date of birth, and social security number, ITIN, or EIN.
When can I expect my refund?
90% of tax returns are completed by the IRS in under 21 days, however, it is possible that your tax return takes longer. Use the Where's My Refund? tool on the IRS website to get an update on your refund status.
How can I avoid IRS tax scams?
Always treat suspicious or unexpected communications from supposed IRS officials with a healthy amount of skepticism. The IRS does not contact taxpayers by email, text message or social media so you can safely ignore any requests through those channels. Read their fact sheet here to know when it is really the IRS calling or knocking on your door.