Choose The Right Free Tax Clinic For You
A free tax clinic is a place where eligible people can get their tax returns done for free by volunteers. These tax clinics are hosted by community organizations across Canada through the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program and the Income Tax Assistance – Volunteer Program in Quebec.
There are different types of free tax clinics.
Walk-in: Show up during advertised hours and a volunteer will do your tax return for you on a first-come, first-served basis.
Drop-off and pick-up: Show up during advertised hours and drop off your documents. A volunteer will do your return, and you will pick it up at a later time.
You will have to prove your identity when you pick up your return and documents.
Life Changes And Your Tax Refund
Tax credits and deductions are often connected to major life circumstances, so they may change from year to year based on your personal situation. For example, getting married, having a baby, or retiring could all have an impact on your taxes. Dont miss out on some of these commonly overlooked areas.
Do I Have To Pay Taxes On Unemployment Income
Normally unemployment compensation is taxable at both the federal and state levels. However, the American Rescue Plan signed into law on March 11 allows people with incomes of up to $150,000 to waive federal taxes on the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits collected in 2020.
Some tax software providers, including H& R Block and TurboTax, have updated their platforms to account for the new tax exclusion, so you can file taxes as you normally would and it will calculate what you owe.
If you filed your tax return before the tax exclusion became law, don’t file an amended return the IRS is going to issue an automatic refund for any taxes paid on the exclusion amount. Those refunds are supposed to start going out in May.
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You Must Submit A Return
If you are registered for income tax, you will be required to submit an annual income tax return to SARS. See the Tax Tables. The 2020 year of assessment runs from 1 March 2019 to 29 February 2020. Every year, SARS announces its Tax Season, a period during which you are required to submit your annual income tax return. The Tax Season for 2020 opened on 1 September 2020. The income tax return which should be completed by individuals is known as the ITR12 form.
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What Is The Difference Between A Beneficiary And An Inheritor
A beneficiary is the person, the institution, the trustee, or the estate that the deceased has named in a contract to receive benefits under a will, an insurance policy, a retirement plan, an annuity, a trust, or another type of contract.
For example a spouse can be the beneficiary of a retirement plan the deceased had with his employer, or the deceaseds nephew can receive the proceeds of his or her life insurance policy.
The others are simply inheritors and may have been named in the will. They may have to look into inheritance tax laws in Canada.
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Get A Transcript Of A Tax Return
A transcript is a computer printout of your return information. Sometimes a transcript is an acceptable substitute for an exact copy of your tax return. You may need a transcript when preparing your taxes. They are often used to verify income and tax filing status when applying for loans and government benefits.
Contact the IRS to get a free transcript . There are two ways you can get your transcript:
Online – To read, print, or download your transcript online, you’ll need to register at IRS.gov. To sign-up, create an account with a username and a password.
How Tax Refunds Work
A tax refund is a reimbursement for excess taxes paid during the year. Most workers prepay their federal income taxes through their paycheck or by filing quarterly estimated taxes.
Employees are required to fill out a Form W-4 when they begin working at a company. The information entered on employees’ Form W-4 determines how much the employer will withhold from their pay to cover federal income taxes. If the employer withholds too much, you may receive a tax refund. If you come up short, you will owe taxes.
A contract worker is considered both an employee and an employer. They do not complete a Form W-4 instead, they are required to pay their own taxes on a quarterly basis.
Estimated tax payments for 2021 are due April 15, 2021 June 15, 2021 Sept. 15, 2021 and Jan. 18, 2022.
This is true even though the tax filing deadline for 2020 individual income taxes was moved to May 17, 2021.
You may also receive a tax refund if you claim a refundable tax credit, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit . Most federal income tax credits are non-refundable and will only reduce the amount you owe in taxes. However, if you claim a refundable tax credit that is greater than the amount you owe, you will receive the difference as a tax refund.
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Check For Math Errors
This may seem obvious, but almost 2 million tax returns were flagged due to math errors in 2019, according to the most recent IRS data.
This could be something as simple as an addition or subtraction error, but it’ll gum up the works if you are counting on a fast refund. Likewise, check the basics on your return, such as Social Security numbers, names, and that you included all the income you earned in 2020. Anything that doesn’t match up with the IRS data will get flagged for review.
Earned Income Tax Credit Has New Twist
The earned Income tax credit is a potential spot for errors. The credit has been used by ID thieves who file phony returns, so the IRS must work to detect fraud.
This tax season, the earned income tax credit can be claimed on a 2020 tax return based on someone’s 2019 or 2020 income this year. The new provision was put into place when the second COVID-19 economic relief package was signed by then-President Donald Trump on Dec. 27.
Many people who lost jobs or saw reductions in pay in 2020 would have received far less EITC money if they could not take their 2019 earnings into account.
Williams, who worked as a babysitter in 2019 but didn’t work in 2020, is able to use her 2019 income to claim the earned income tax credit on the 2020 return, according to Brown, who is her tax preparer.
Her tax situation is complicated by the fact that she’s now claiming her granddaughter as a qualifying dependent in order to receive stimulus money for the child.
Amended returns for 2018 and 2019 were filed to claim the granddaughter as a dependent.
Brown said Williams meets all requirements to claim her granddaughter, and the girl’s father did not file a tax return to claim her.
“She can prove residency through school records,” Brown said. “No one claimed her on their taxes.”
Brown said the 2020 refund for Williams should have been issued by mid- or late March. The amended returns might take longer, but he’s seeing delays there, too.
She has received no information from the IRS.
How Should I Contact The Irs For More Help
The IRS received 167 million calls this tax season, which is four times the number of calls in 2019. And based on the recent report, only 7 percent of calls reached a telephone agent for help. While you could try calling the IRS to check your status, the agency’s live phone assistance is extremely limited right now because the IRS says it’s working hard to get through the backlog. You shouldn’t file a second tax return or contact the IRS about the status of your return.
The IRS is directing people to the Let Us Help You page on its website for more information. It also advises taxpayers to get in-person help at Taxpayer Assistance Centers. You can contact your local IRS office or call to make an appointment: 844-545-5640. You can also contact the Taxpayer Advocate Service if you’re eligible for assistance by calling them: 877-777-4778.
Though the chances of getting live assistance are slim, the IRS says you should only call the agency directly if it’s been 21 days or more since you filed your taxes online, or if the Where’s My Refund tool tells you to contact the IRS. You can call: 800-829-1040 or 800-829-8374 during regular business hours.
Why Would I Be Due A Tax Refund
There are many reasons why you could be due a tax refund under PAYE and in a lot of cases people are simply unaware what they can claim a refund for.
Some of the common reasons we have secured refunds for our clients are:
- Travel Any required travel as part of your role .
- Uniform Washing, dry cleaning or any other necessities related to clothing maintenance.
- Tools and protective clothing When you must pay for items out of your own pocket.
- Professional fees When membership of professional bodies or Trade Unions are needed.
- Leaving the UK If you are due to leave the country, you may be entitled to a rebate.
- Pension tax relief As a higher rate taxpayer paying into a private pension, you can get an extra 20% tax relief.
- Working from home If you are contracted to work from home, you are able to claim proportionately for costs such as energy and phone/internet bills.
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Financial Help During Covid
Your refund will be automatic if your income is from:
- an employee share-scheme benefit where tax is already deducted
- schedular payments
- New Zealand superannuation .
If youre self-employed or get income from somewhere not listed above, you need to:
Log in to Inland Revenue to see if you have a refund.
While youre there:
- check your contact information is correct
- nominate a bank account where IR can deposit your refund.
How Can I Speed Up My Refund
Here are three tips to help speed up receipt of your income tax refund.
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Important Notice For Tax Time
Did you know that identity theft, especially around tax season, is running rampant? People’s credit information was stolen at Target, Home Depot, even The State of California. Now’s a great time to make sure that your credit is safe.
Credit Karma: Second, now is a great time to check your credit report and make sure that there are no issues. You should be checking your credit at least once per year, and tax time is a great time to do it. We recommend using because its free! Plus, has a lot of great tools to help you improve your credit if you need to, and they can help you monitor your credit over time.
Claiming Your Tax Refund
Theres actually more than one way to receive your tax refund. You can request that the government send you a paper check in the mail. Or you can decide to go for a direct deposit tax refund and have your money put into three different places, including a savings and a retirement account.
Ready to get in on the investing game? You also have the option of using your tax refund to buy $5,000 or less in Series I savings bonds.
Whatever you decide to do with it, you have three years to claim your refund from the initial filing deadline. Thats good news if you miss the April 15 due date or you still havent filed your taxes from three years ago. And if you were granted an extension, youll have three years from the extended deadline to ask for a refund check.
Unfortunately, you dont always get to keep your entire refund. Sometimes, the IRS makes a mistake and sends you more money than you were meant to have. Anyone who owes child support or has overdue student loan bills may have some of their refund taken and applied to those debts. Word of advice: If your refund check seems larger than it should be, you might want to wait before you head out on a shopping spree.
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Adjustments To Your Refund
The CRA may keep some or all of your income tax refund if any of the following situations apply:
- You owe or are about to owe a balance.
- You have a garnishment order under the Family Orders and Agreements Enforcement Assistance Act.
- You owe other federal, provincial, or territorial government debts, such as student loans, employment insurance, and social assistance benefit overpayments, immigration loans, and training allowance overpayments.
- You have any outstanding goods and services tax or harmonized sales tax returns from a sole proprietorship or partnership.
- Have a refund of $2 or less.
What You Can Do To Help Us Stop Fraud
If we suspect fraud is being committed against you, we will send you a letter requesting verification of your identification. Please respond to our letter as soon as possible. The quickest way to respond is to visit myVTax and click Respond to Correspondence.
Learn more aboutidentity theft and tax refund fraud, how to detect it, how to avoid it, and how to report it if you believe you are a victim.
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When Will You Receive Your Refund
The IRS has historically said that it issues refunds in less than 21 days for most returns, but it can take up to six weeks if you mail in a paper return. It advises you to add another estimated 10 days to allow for the postal delivery process if you’re requesting a paper check for your refund rather than direct deposit.
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How To Secure A Timely Refund
Delaying the traditional start of tax season may help reduce confusion among taxpayers who havent received stimulus payments they are eligible for, but it also means a longer wait for Americans who rely on annual tax refund payments and file early in the season, or who wont receive any stimulus until filing their returns.
The IRS says nine out of 10 taxpayers will receive their refund within 21 days of filing if they do so electronically using direct deposit and there are no issues with the return.
Thats three weeks that people are out that money, says Dan Herron, CPA, founder of Elemental Wealth Advisors in San Luis Obispo, California. But many who rely on an annual refund check, need that money because they bank on that to pay for medical expenses, or major purchases, or just surviving at this point. Thats frustrating.
Despite the late start, there are a few ways to ensure you receive your tax refund, including any stimulus payment youre eligible for using the Recovery Rebate Credit, as quickly as possible.
Over A Quarter Of Respondents Did Not Plan On Filing A Tax Return
A 2018 GOBankingRates survey found that more than a quarter of respondents said they didnt plan to file a return. There are times when you dont have to file taxes, such as when your income is below a certain threshold. But if you owe taxes and dont file a return, you will have to pay penalties and interest and could be subject to a tax levy which means the IRS will seize your property if you dont pay your debt.
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