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12 IRS Tax Refund Scams – Common Frauds to Avoid in...

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.
New Basis Reporting Form

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.
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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11 IRS Tax Audit Triggers – Red Flags You Should Know...

Most IRS audits are not random. They’re triggered by red flags that indicate a potentially fault return, high odds of undisclosed income, or both. Learn what these triggers are and how to avoid them to prevent unwanted attention from good ol’ Uncle Sam.
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Top 8 Options for Free Online Tax Preparation Software & Services

Bank account promotions aren't the only way to get your hands on free money. If you have a relatively simple tax situation - for example, if...
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Types of Tax-Advantaged Accounts for Retirement, Education, & Health Care

Savvy taxpayers can slash their tax bill using a range of tax-sheltered accounts, but these can seem confusing and often sound alike. Which combination of retirement accounts, education accounts, and health savings accounts can help you save on your tax bill? Read on to learn more.
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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...

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...

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...

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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Using Tax Prep Software vs. Hiring a Professional – Which Should...

A generation ago, most U.S. taxpayers either outsourced tax prep to trained human preparers or manually completed their own taxes using paper forms provided...
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Claiming the Child Tax Credit – Everything You Need to Know...

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.