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5 Common Tax Mistakes to Avoid


It’s that time of year again! Get ready to break out the calculator and pencils, dig out the enormous pile of receipts, tax forms and pay stubs, and get to work.

Are you drowning in paper and getting numb from all those numbers? Don’t worry! As soon as you’ve got it all organized and filed, you won’t need to think about your taxes again until next year.

Don’t be too hasty, though. You don’t want to wind up making a mistake that’ll delay your refund, make you accountable to receive a fee or, even worse, force you to do that dreaded paperwork and math all over again.

Whether you choose to do it yourself, use a tax-prep computer program, or hand it all over to an accountant, begin by checking out our handy list of common mistakes people make on their taxes.

1. Faulty Math

Pay attention to the numbers! Even a small miscalculation or a mistake in writing digits can throw off all your numbers and get you into trouble with the IRS.

2. Name Changes and Misspellings

Double check your spelling! If you’ve recently changed your legal name, let the Social Security Administration know to avoid any hiccups that may stall your refund.

3. Omitting Extra Income

If you’ve taken any side jobs during the past year, fill out a 1099-MISC and file it along with the rest of your taxes.

4. Recent Tax Law Changes

Do your research! When preparing your taxes, be sure to file according to the most recent laws in place.

5. Signing Your Forms

If you are filing the old-fashioned way, put your signature wherever required. If filing online, you can use a PIN number instead.

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