Tax Season: Make Sure You’re Getting All The Benefits You’re Entitled To

Mar 25, 2021, 8:15 AM

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – If you haven’t filed your taxes yet, you have a little more time.

The federal tax filing deadline has officially been postponed from April 15 to May 17 by the IRS, giving Americans an extra month.

As you prepare to make sure Uncle Sam gets his money and that you get yours, it’s important to note that you are responsible to make sure things are done correctly.

“There is no safeguard,” said Mark Steber with Jackson Hewitt. “There is no safety net. There is no automatic review process at the IRS or anywhere that makes sure you got all the tax benefits you deserve. That’s on you, and hopefully you and your tax professional.”

Steber was adamant that the IRS doesn’t care if you don’t overpay. But they do care if you don’t pay enough.

While filing, you should double and triple check that you’ve accounted for all unemployment benefits, small wage earnings and even crypto currency, just to name a few of the easy-to-forget items.

Steber said missing one of those isn’t the worst thing a person can do, though.

“If you leave off a credit, if you leave off a dependent, if you leave off some sort of tax benefit that could give you a bigger tax refund, that’s a much worse crime, in my opinion,” he said.

In 2020, there are several tax issues people need to be aware of:

  • Stimulus money is not taxable, so do not list it as income.
  • File an amendment to your tax forms if you don’t get all of your stimulus money, moved, had bank account issues, or adopted or fostered children.
  • See if you qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit. One-in-5 taxpayers don’t claim it when they actually qualify.
  • Look for clarification on the new child tax credits that just passed in the American Rescue Plan. Families could receive an advance payment beginning in July.

You can also file for an extension if needed, which pushes the deadline even further from May 17 to Oct. 15. However, the IRS said doing that doesn’t grant an extension if you owe money on your taxes.

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Tax Season: Make Sure You’re Getting All The Benefits You’re Entitled To