Speed Kills Your Refund: Common Tax Preparation Errors Caused By

Avoid Common Tax Preparation Mistakes

Tax PreparationSpeed Kills Your Refund: Common Tax Preparation Errors Caused By Hurrying

Tax time can be extremely stressful for anybody. If you’ve neglected your tax preparation until the last minute, you’ll find your situation particularly unpleasant. Although you can get your taxes done fast if you make a supreme effort, it’s not the best idea. This article will present you with some of the most common errors that can creep into your tax return if you speed through your paperwork.

Being rushed when you sit down to do your taxes can lead you to make serious mistakes right from the start. These can be some of the nastiest errors to make, because of the way they tend to snowball. If you don’t report your full income accurately, for instance, you’ll waste a great deal of time making calculations that will ultimately be useless. A moment’s inattention when you refer to the tax tables can be similarly disastrous; taking your rate off of the wrong line will spoil all the rest of the work you do.

Preparing your taxes properly is all about accuracy with numbers. Like anyone, you’ll find that keeping numbers straight is harder the faster you rush. Speeding through your forms can lead to easily-avoidable errors, like transposing digits in your calculations or even your social security number. If you perform additions and subtractions inaccurately, you can’t rely on the numbers you produce. This is why it’s important that you do your math slowly, with the assistance of a calculator, and leave yourself a healthy amount of time to double-check all of your work.

When you’re desperate to get your taxes wrapped up quickly, you can be tempted to neglect some of the important support documents your return will need. It can feel like filling out the forms is more important than tracking down an errant 1099 or W-2, but this is assuredly not the case. A return with missing or incomplete supporting documents is a very suspicious one. It will take the IRS extra time to deal with such a return, and you might not like the kind of attention they end up giving it.

If you stay away from these urgency-based errors and fill out your tax forms well in advance, you may still make the mistake of leaving the final tasks of printing, assembling and addressing your return until close to tax day. It’s much better to push on to the last lap and get your tax return in the mail early. If you leave it until the last minute, it’s easy to make a foolish omission like neglecting to sign and date your return or forgetting to make a personal copy of your complete return before you send it. These sorts of errors can really come back to haunt you.

By now you have a pretty good idea what the single most important piece of tax preparation advice is: don’t rush. The more time you give yourself to fill out your tax paperwork, the more accurate it will be and these sorts of simple mistakes will be less likely. Tax day can be entirely stress-free when you can congratulate yourself on getting your return wrapped up and sent out well before the deadline.