Taxes Articles


Three Income Tax Credits That Can Help you Stomach Tax Season

Income tax time is a time of headaches and stress for people who will owe taxes. It can be a time of rejoicing for people who are eligible for refunds, however. Taxpayers who do not have an excessive income can qualify for certain credits and deductions that can help them to obtain refunds. The foll.... Keep Reading

SELF HELP: Self-employed still can save at tax time

My father is self-employed and has been for 40 years, earning his living as a general contractor, building homes and working for himself. Tax time always was hectic, scrambling around trying to find gas slips or sitting at the dining room table, trying to tally all his expenses from receipts that .... Keep Reading

401KO'd: In the midst of retirement, are you running low on money?

You spent your entire career working hard and planning for retirement, stashing away cash and investing in a 401K or IRA so that you're golden years have a silver lining. But as you're calling it quits and embarking on your post work wonderland, you have to be quick to realize that your yearly sala.... Keep Reading

50 Cent Gas Tax

I can't believe I'm linking to Fox News but desperate times call for desperate measures. The article in question is that a Michigan congressman wants to place a $.50/gallon tax on gas. The article says: Polls show tha.... Keep Reading

$800 Tax Rebate

An $800 tax rebate for US citizens is being bandied about by President Bush. Of course I would rather have $800 than not but what does that really say about the American people? I'll tell you--that we LOVE spending money and can't help ourselves. I can assure you that if I get to keep an extra $8.... Keep Reading

Future Gas Tax

A special commission has suggested to the US government they should raise the federal tax on gas by as much as 40 cents per gallon over the next five years. Currently we're taxed 18.4 cents a gallon. Personally, I.... Keep Reading

Tax Law Amended

George Bush finally did something good by amending the shield to tax-exempt groups. The law was originally intended to curb questionable tax arrangements in which corporations bought public land or asset.... Keep Reading

Time For Crime

California is talking about releasing over 22k prisoners to save tax dollars. It's not my place to say if this is good or bad but if it were my place I'd first want to know who makes up the "certain non-serious, nonviolent, no.... Keep Reading

Sugar Tax

Looks like San Fran is ready to impose a high fructose corn syrup tax. I think that's great. They tax smokers for smoking because of the down-the-road health costs so I think it's only fair they start taxing th.... Keep Reading

Baby Tax

Fortunately, because I only have two kids (with no desire for more), I would exempt from the proposed baby tax. Because I'm a parent you might think I would be vehemently opposed to this but in reality I think it's.... Keep Reading

The Absolute Pitts

Dear Government, I don't mind you wasting my money and even if I did, I would be powerless to stop you. You waste my hard-earned money on everything from wars across the world to funneling money to hateful universities like Oral Roberts. That said, for the love of God, do not waste my money rebui.... Keep Reading

Bulgaria's Flat Tax

While I'm on the subject of flat taxes, most of the EU has them. They've reported all these great results, which include significant foreign investment. Bulgaria has just signed on as the n.... Keep Reading

Flax Tax Thompson

Apparently Fred Thompson is endorsing a Flat Tax. I think he's an idiot personally and I think a flat tax is a terrible idea. Do we need tax reform? Yes, absolutely. Is a flat tax the way to g.... Keep Reading

Follow Buffett for Taxes

Seagate's founder wants to pay more taxes too. Just a few weeks after Warren Buffett declared he was paying too little in Taxes, Seagate CEO Bill W.... Keep Reading

Free Turbo Tax 2008

Since it's almost time to receive your W2s, you should already be prepared to file taxes. Much like they have done every year for at least the past three, Turbo Tax (Intuit) is offerin.... Keep Reading

End of Corporation Tax

According to Jeremy Hetherington: Last week saw the remarkable spectacle of a US Democrat proposing to reduce corporation tax by 5%. OK, the US rate is much higher than mos.... Keep Reading

Estate (Death) Tax

Well, if Buffett says to keep the inheritance/state/death tax, then I guess we should listen--he has more to lose than just about anyone. "I think we need to ... take a little more out of the hides of g.... Keep Reading

You Tax Dollars at Work

I don't like to cover politics at all, but here are your current tax dollars at work (from Politico). Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), in fact, put out a press release lat.... Keep Reading

Tax Buffett

During an interview with NBC television, Mr Buffett brandished an informal survey of 15 of his 18 office staff at his Berkshire Hathaway empire. The billionaire said he was paying 17.7% payroll and income tax, compared with an average in the office of 32.9%. "There wasn't anyone in the office, fro.... Keep Reading

No New Taxes...Not

Apparently ranking Democrats are considering raising some taxes. Like I have always said, I try to steer clear of political scuffles and this is no exception.... Keep Reading

Internet Tax Ban Extended

I was happy to read this morning in the Washington Post that the moratorium on internet use is going to continue for another four years. I truly believe is the most remarkable "inv.... Keep Reading

When are tax extensions due?

If you filed for a tax extension in April guess what--it was due a few days ago. People filing for tax extensions either need to remit payment or request a second extension by October 15th. You can still use the April-style tax software like TurboTax for .... Keep Reading

Tax Evaders Surrender

The much-publicized NH couple who refused to pay their taxes came to a peaceful end when they surrendered yesterday. They had always contended that taxing citizens was illegal under the constitution. Pers.... Keep Reading

Quebec's Global Warming Tax

According to Reuters UK, Quebec is set to introduce a new carbon tax. This doesn't come as a surprise me--Canada has always bee.... Keep Reading

Hillary Wants $5,000 for Every U.S. Baby

I really, really try hard to stay out of politics on here because I'm acutely aware of the fact that there are two things you should never discuss with strangers--politics or religion. They're topics that people feel so strongly about that there's no sense trying to have a debate about them because.... Keep Reading

Benefits of E-Filing

This will by my last entry on taxes for a while for the simple reason that I don't like to think about taxes any more than I have to. Once a year is plenty for me. The IRS and many state tax authorities are pushing electronic filing of tax returns. It helps them with processing and will usually g.... Keep Reading

Review: TaxACT

Of the "big three", TaxACT is probably the least-known but, for 1040EZ filers, has a big advantage--it's free. They offer three different versions: Standard, Deluxe, and Ultimate. Standard: Unless you're filing a 1040EZ this will probably be too weak for you and you'll need one of the more complex.... Keep Reading

Review: H&R Block's TaxCut

TaxCut is a product of tax preparation giant H&R Block, which gives it a certain amount of creditability and name recognition. They also feature commercials saying "I've got people" that promote their mini-classes where you can learn basic through intermediate tax preparation. It's a great mar.... Keep Reading

Review: TurboTax

TurboTax is far-and-away the top-selling tax preparation software. How much market share do they command? When a glitch delayed some 2007 filers, the IRS caved and gave them an extra day to get it in. When you can make the IRS flexible you've got all the clout you need. If you use any of Quick.... Keep Reading

TurboTax, TaxACT, and TaxCut

There are three major vendors of personal tax preparation software and numerous others that command a smaller piece of the market. Since all of the tax preparation programs have to identify and solve all the major problems there should really be no difference between vendors. However, there are. .... Keep Reading

Tax Break on Student Loans

Up to $2500 in interest on some student loans (Stafford, PLUS, Perkins, Consolidation, and private) may be tax deductible if certain criteria are met. The proceeds of the loan must have been used for qualified higher education expenses (tuition, fees, room and board, supplies, and other related exp.... Keep Reading

Tax Issues and Moving

You may be able to deduct some of the expenses of moving from your taxable income, even if you don't itemize expenses. There are two rules you must satisfy: the distance test requires the new job to be located at least fifty miles from your old residence. The time test requires you to work full-ti.... Keep Reading

I can't pay my taxes

It's a disturbing moment when you finish your tax return and realize you owe additional tax and don't have the money to pay for it. Don't panic. First of all, don't compound the problem by filing your tax return late. File by the due date or file for an extension even if you can't pay all of the .... Keep Reading

How are tax returns chosen for audit?

The IRS uses something called the DIF--the discriminant function system, which assigns a score to key elements on your return. If the total score for your entire return is greater than the IRS guidelines, then computer will kick your return out for review by an official IRS agent. If the agent fee.... Keep Reading

Audit Survival

Nobody likes to have the taxman come knocking on their front door. There are a few simple steps you can take to reduce your chances of being audited, but if you're one of the 0.5% of Americans randomly chosen for an audit, don't freak out. Being prepared is more than half your battle. The most ba.... Keep Reading

Tax-Saving Strategies

You can save money by taking advantage of a few tax-saving strategies and make sure you take all the deductions you're entitled to. Bunching and accelerating deductions are two time-honored approaches to cutting taxes. Both require an awareness of what your tax situation is before the end of the y.... Keep Reading

Making Tax-Wise Financial Decisions

Thinking about how much of your income goes towards taxes. If you're in the higher tax brackets, you may be handing nearly half of every dollar you earn to Uncle Sam, but there are things you can do to keep more of your hard-earned money. Good tax planning is a year-round activity, and investing t.... Keep Reading

Do I need a CPA?

About half of all Americans use a tax preparation service of some kind. Over 750,000 pay a tax preparer to complete the very simple Form 1040EZ. Many other use a preparer for the 1040 form, even though the average person is more than capable of doing it by him or herself. While it pays to use exp.... Keep Reading

Types of Federal Tax Return Forms

There are four versions of the US individual Income Tax Return From 1040: Form 1040EZ: The simplest form, for those under age 65 with no dependents, no itemized deductions, no more than $1500 of taxable interest income, no advance earned income tax credit (EITC), and taxable income from line six of.... Keep Reading

Standard and Itemized Deducations

When it comes to tax deductions, you have two choices: the standard deduction, which is a fixed dollar amount that you deduct from your taxable income, or itemized deductions. The standard deduction is around $4700 if you're single or just under $8000 if you're married and filing jointly. If you'r.... Keep Reading

Tax Exemptions

An exemption is a gift from the IRS: a fixed amount you get to deduct from your taxable income for yourself, your spouse and each eligible depend you can claim on your income tax return. In 2002, each exemption was worth $3,000, so if you're married but have no kids you can claim $6,000 if you go a.... Keep Reading

The W4 Form

The amount you have withheld is based on your filing status as well as the number of withholding allowances you selected on the W4 that you filed with your employer. You should file a NEW W4 with your employer if a) you got a big refund last year b) owed more than $100 last year c) got married, div.... Keep Reading

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