5 Misconceptions About Filing Your Taxes

For the last couple of years, my mom has been helping out family and close friends with filing their tax returns. I sat down with her to find out some of the most commons misconceptions that people normally have about filing their taxes.  I hope this clears some things up, and if you have any question or want to contribute to the list, please comment below!

1. I have to pay to get my taxes done because it’s a difficult task. As an accounting student, I think that accounting is a respectable field, but I will also be the first person to tell you that doing taxes is not rocket science! I do believe that back in the day doing taxes may have been hard, but there are different databases out there that allow you to easily file your taxes for FREE! Click here to find the resources.

2. If I get an extension to file, I also get an extension to pay. If you are unable to file your taxes by the due date, you may be able to get an automatic 6-month extension of time to file. It is important to note that an extension to file does not grant you an extension to pay your taxes. You still have to pay by April 15th, so I would suggest estimating what you think you may owe and writing a check to the IRS. Otherwise, you will be charged a late penalty.

3. If I owe, it’s better not to file. Some people will see that they are going to owe, so they will decide not to file. This is not a good idea. You will be charged a penalty for not filing timely and for not paying timely. It’s best to file, and get on a payment arrangement to pay the money that you owe.

4. I’m not being charged interest while on my payment plan. Lol, yeah right. The government will never loan you money for free. So try and get your balance paid off as soon as possible!

5. If I’m on a payment arrangement, they won’t take my next refund. Would you give someone money if they still owed you money? Probably not, unless you really loved the person and I don’t think the IRS feels that way about us. If you still owe the IRS money by the time you are suppose to get another refund, they will take what you owe them from that refund, and you will get the remainder.

By Khadija Bingham

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