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MVCU, taxes, filing
Home / Tools / What You Need To Know About Filing Your Taxes This Year
What You Need To Know About Filing Your Taxes This Year on 1/14/2021

What You Need To Know About Filing Your Taxes This Year

It’s tax season again!  Do you dread filing your taxes each year? We don’t have any secrets for making the process more fun, but we do have some tips that will hopefully make it a bit easier. 

TIP: Gather all the Things

Before you even think of getting started, gather all the tax-related documents and information you’ll need in a central place.  These include:

  • W-2 forms
  • Any 1099s you receive
  • Any alimony, jury duty, gambling or medical income
  • Your financial institution’s routing number (Merrimack Valley Credit Union’s routing number is 2113 8492 6 and the routing number for Bridgewater Credit Union, a division of Merrimack Valley Credit Union, is 2113 8131 4)
  • 1098 forms if you are in school or paying student loans
  • Receipts for any qualifying energy-efficient home improvements
  • Alimony paid
  • Any records of IRA contributions or Medical Savings Account contributions
  • All receipts needed if you itemize your deductions

TIP: Plan to File for Less

Surprise– the IRS can help you file your taxes for free! If you earn less than $66,000, you can file for free using the offers available from the IRS here. If you earn more than $66,000, they offer Free File Fillable Forms and instruction guides to help you through the process.  Consider using a service such as TurboTax to help calculate your taxes.  As a member of MVCU, you can save money on TurboTax through Love My Credit Union Rewards.

Determine how you will be filing.  If you’re married, are you planning to file jointly, or separately? If you’re not married, are you filing as single or head of household?  Head of household is a great option if you’re a single parent – it has a lower tax rate and a higher standard deduction!

TIP: Carve Out Some Time

Set aside some time when you won’t be disturbed, make some coffee or tea, and sit down with your paperwork, a pencil, eraser, pen, and calculator.   Choose a quiet spot away from TV, noise, and distractions.  After you finish your taxes, do something fun to celebrate!  Walk away from your tax work for a day or two.  Then, go back with fresh eyes and review all the information for accuracy before submitting.

TIP: Don’t Fret About Mistakes

If you find a mistake with tax forms you’ve already submitted, go to the IRS website and get a form 1040-X to correct it.  If you ignore your mistake, you might have to participate in an audit in the future and possibly pay penalties or other fees.

TIP: Protect Yourself From Fraud & Disputes

If you expect a refund, you should file as early as possible to avoid potential tax identity theft. This type of theft generally starts when a thief accesses someone else’s personal information, files a fake tax return under that person’s name and pockets the refund.

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