As if tax time weren’t confusing enough, just when you think you know something, the government goes and changes the rules. Case in point: the notoriously complicated tax system in the United States. That explains why U.S. taxpayers spend an estimated 7.6 billion hours (per year!) complying with federal tax requirements, according to the National Taxpayers Union. This year’s tax increases have mixed things up again and will surely have taxpayers – especially those with higher incomes – scrambling to figure out how to reduce what they owe.
I talked to FOX Business Network reporter and retail stock analyst Sandra Smith about what investors can expect this year. Check it out in my new post on GoldenGirlFinance.com.
There are a number of reasons why you might get a tax refund this year. And while your reaction is likely the same – ecstatic (the bigger, the better right?), have you ever wondered if getting a refund may not actually be in your best interest…quite literally? Indeed, there are probably a lot of things you don’t know about your refund – and, as with most financial misunderstandings, some of these can cost you. I clear up the confusion and make sense of five common misconceptions surrounding your tax refund in my new article on GoldenGirlFinance.ca: http://bit.ly/JwnnK1
Filing taxes is a lot like yard work – we’d all love to get out of doing it (isn’t that what husbands and teenage kids are for?), but when it comes to dealing with your tax return, it’s time to forget the stall tactics. No matter how long you prolong the matter, you have to file – even if you don’t have the money to pay. And if you haven’t filed yet, it’s time to get a move on it! Check out my new article on GoldenGirlFinance.ca for tips on what you should be doing now: http://bit.ly/IjnAPC
Estate tax (sometimes called inheritance tax at the state level) is affectionately referred to as the “death tax” in political circles. The gist of it: You die and the government taxes a portion of the estate you turn over to your surviving relatives.
The good news is, unless you have a pretty substantial estate, you don’t have to worry about it. For 2011, the estate tax exemption is $5 million, although this is scheduled to decrease to $1 million in 2013, which would affect a lot more people.
Once the estate owner dies, there isn’t much beneficiaries can do to reduce estate taxes, so if you plan to leave a sizable estate behind, the time to act is now. Read more in my new post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/IszgRR
Serving a slice of income to the government is a bit like having an unwelcome guest at the dinner table – one who grabs a second helping of pie before you even sit down to dessert. Unfortunately, this is one guest who’ll show up uninvited each and every year. But rather than dread the taxman’s arrival, it’s time to get shrewd, smart and serious about tax deductions. Because while CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) justifiably aims to collect the minimum amount of taxes you owe, it’ll also quite happily accept any extra amount you may inadvertently (and unnecessarily) pay. Consider some of the things that taxpayers typically overlook – and the deductions and credits that are often left on the table. Read more in my new article on GoldenGirlFinance.ca: http://bit.ly/x9fNUC
When it comes to taxes, it seems that everyone has an opinion. Whether it’s the way they’re spent (or misspent), or whether we should pay less (or someone else should pay more), this surprisingly feisty topic is hardly neutral ground. Indeed, bring up taxes at a cocktail party and you’re likely to stir up a debate that could very well get ugly, especially around tax time. The problem is, much of the typical tax tirade isn’t based on facts. Check out some of the common misconceptions in my new post on GoldenGirlFinance.ca: http://bit.ly/z2d47d
Researchers from the Duke University Medical Center and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute pegged the monthly medical costs for those with cancer at $712 per month – and that’s with insurance. Tax deductions can help ease the burden. Check out my latest article on this topic for GoBankingRates.com here: http://www.gobankingrates.com/tax/breast-cancer-treatment-tax-deductions-patients/