Do not believe the myths about US taxes: what you need to know before filing a return in 2023 - ForumDaily
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Don't Believe the US Tax Myths: What You Need to Know Before Filing in 2023

You may have heard that many taxpayers are in for a big surprise this tax season if they expect a big refund check or an amount close to what they received last year. But this is more from the category of so-called tax myths than from the real situation. What other tax myths are common this year, the publication said CNBC.

Photo: IStock

In 2022, according to the IRS, more than two-thirds of tax declarers received a refund. So far this year, the average refund is $3 as of March 028, compared to $3 in the same period last year—a decrease of about 3%.

You may get a smaller tax refund this year as some tax credits, including the Child Tax Credit, the Child and Dependent Care Credit, and the Earned Income Tax Credit, have returned to pre-pandemic levels. And the deduction for charitable contributions up to $300 has been completely eliminated.

Here are the facts behind four more common tax myths.

Myth: Tax returns must be filed by April 15, 2023

Fact: federal income tax returns must be filed by April 18, 2023

A recent poll showed that nearly 7 out of 10 people didn't know that Tax Day is April 18 this year. One of the biggest tax myths is that tax returns must always be filed on April 15th. If this date falls on a weekend or holiday, the tax day is the next business day.

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This year, the deadline for filing is April 18 because April 15 is a Saturday, and the next weekday (April 17) is recognized as a holiday in Washington, DC, Emancipation Day. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reports that DC holidays shift the deadline in the same way as federal holidays.

Some taxpayers may be given even more time to file their returns. And those living in disaster areas in California, Alabama, or Georgia will have a much later deadline—October 16, 2023—to file their federal tax return and pay their tax bill, if they have one.

Myth: Get a deferral if you can't pay your tax bill now

Fact: if you owe the IRS, then you should pay everything before tax day to avoid interest and penalties

You can get a tax deferral by filing a special IRS document (Form 4868). This will give you six months - until October 16, 2023 - to file your tax return, but no more time to pay your taxes. You can also get an automatic filing renewal when you make an electronic payment using Direct Pay on

The IRS says you must assess and pay all taxes due by the due date to avoid possible penalties. In addition, the penalties are greater if you are in debt and have not filed a tax return than if you have filed and owe money but cannot pay your tax bill in full.

Going forward, make regular quarterly tax payments or develop a payment plan, says Shiloh Johnson, a certified public accountant and founder of Complyant, a Los Angeles-based startup that helps small business owners pay their taxes.

Then, "if you need to apply for an extension, you don't have to pay because you would have to make those payments within a year."

Myth: You can't file a tax return for free

Fact: If you earned less than $2022 in 73, use IRS Free File to file your tax return for free. And even if your income is higher, you can use the Free File forms to file your own tax return.

Use the IRS Free File online tool to find the best tax software for your location, income, and specific credits and deductions. Tax providers may have their own income regulations and other requirements for free filing. This tool will let you know which providers might be best for your situation and which ones will prepare state tax returns for free.

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And if you want to talk to someone in person, there are Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or VITA centers around the country to help people making $60 or less. In addition, there are places that offer tax advice for the elderly, or TCE for those over 000.

Myth: if you contact the tax inspector and there are errors in your declaration, then he will be responsible

Fact: You are solely responsible for all information on your tax return, regardless of who prepared it.

Therefore, choose your tax inspector very carefully. To do this, go to the "Selecting a Tax Professional" page on the IRS website for information about the powers and qualifications of a tax professional. The IRS recommends the following steps:

  • look for a specialist who is available all year round in case of questions;
  • Avoid any tax professional whose fees are based on your refund, or who claim to be able to refund you more than a competitor.
  • Always check your tax return before signing it.

Tax Tip: Compare This Year's Earnings to Last Year's

Take the time to compare this year's tax return with last year's, advises Marinela Collado, CPA and CFP at Tobias Financial Advisors in Plantation, Florida.

Taxpayers need to "see what has changed and what they could have done differently."

“It’s better to make these changes ahead of time,” she said. “Working with a tax professional all year round will help you avoid making the same mistake over and over.”

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