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Janet Berry-Johnson

Janet Berry-Johnson is a Certified Public Accountant. Before leaving the accounting world to focus on freelance writing, she specialized in income tax consulting and compliance for individuals and small businesses. She lives in Omaha, Nebraska with her husband and son and their rescue dog, Dexter.
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Contractors vs. Employees (Differences) – Who Should You Hire?

When a business grows enough to require hiring more talent, small-business owners must decide whether to hire employees or freelancers. There are important legal distinctions between the two, and each option has its pros and cons. Which kind of hire makes more sense for your business? Find out here.
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How to Pay Federal Estimated Taxes Online to the IRS in 2021

Freelancers and small-business owners must pay estimated taxes four times a year. This may sound complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. We break down how to estimate your quarterly taxes, when to make payments, and what happens if you underpay.
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12 IRS Tax Refund Scams – Common Frauds to Avoid in 2021

It’s easy to see why tax scams tend to crop up most often during tax season. With billions of dollars in refunds going out, there are bound to be fraudsters trying to take advantage of people. To avoid becoming a victim, it helps to be aware of some of the more common types of tax scams.
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Tax Form 8949 – Instructions for Reporting Capital Gains & Losses

If you’ve begun investing, you need to report capital gains or losses on your tax return. It’s a bit complicated to get started, but once you’re organized, you’ll be able to fill out Form 8949 and Schedule D very quickly. Learn about Tax Form 8949 — Instructions for Reporting Capital Gains & Losses.
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Real Costs of Buying a Home – How Much Can You Afford to Purchase?

There are plenty of perks to owning a home, but it’s an expensive endeavor. The real cost of buying a home is a lot more than the price on the for-sale listing, and many homebuyers grossly underestimate the actual costs. Here’s a list of the costs to keep in mind when deciding whether to buy a home.
Tax Refund Anticipation Loan

Tax Refund Anticipation Loans (RALs) – Why You Should Stay Away

A cash tax refund anticipation loan, also known as a RAL, is a way for a tax filer to get their refund immediately. Millions of tax filers take advantage of these quickie tax loans every tax season. But there are several reasons why this kind of loan is not a wise financial decision.
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What Is the FairTax Act Explained – Pros & Cons

Anyone who’s filed a tax return knows the U.S. tax system is complex and difficult to understand. Many say corporations, wealthy individuals, and special interest groups use loopholes to avoid paying their fair share. One idea for fixing the system is called FairTax. But would it really work?
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What Happens If You Miss the Tax Deadline? – Penalties for Filing Late

If you missed the tax deadline, you're likely very concerned about fees, penalties, and how to file your taxes late. The good news is that it can happen to anyone, for a variety of reasons, and you can still get back on track. Here is some advice for doing just that, whether you’re owed a refund or you owe tax to the IRS.
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What Is an IRS Identity Protection (IP) PIN Number & How Can I Get...

Identity thieves aren’t just after credit cards and Social Security numbers anymore — they also want to steal your tax refund. Getting an IRS Identity Protection PIN is a voluntary step you can take to help protect your tax refund. Learn what Identity Protection PINs are and how to get one.
Overlooked Personal Tax Deductions

List of 14 Commonly Overlooked Personal Tax Deductions & Credits for Individuals

Tax deductions and credits can add up to sizable savings and help boost your tax refund — or at least minimize your overall tax burden. Review these commonly overlooked deductions and credits to make sure you don’t miss any you’re eligible for.
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Important Tax Due Dates & Deadlines – 2021 IRS Tax Calendar

Do tax deadlines seem to sneak up on you? April 15 isn't the only important day on the tax calendar. There are a number of important tax deadlines throughout the year that may or...
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Claiming the Child Tax Credit – Everything You Need to Know in 2021

Raising a child isn’t cheap. Fortunately, there are several parental tax deductions and credits available to those with dependent children. One of them, the child tax credit, doesn’t require parents to cover any particular costs. Here’s how you claim this valuable credit and how much it’s worth.