How To: File Taxes for the 1st Time

By Avery Mills | Mar 25, 2016, 2:38:55 PM

How To: File Taxes for the 1st TimeCongratulations, you are officially an adult and have a real job. Now you have to file taxes.

Wait, what?

Filing your taxes can be daunting, even for the most seasoned of pros. It can be complicated, time consuming, and just all around stressful.

Here are some tips that will, hopefully, make the tax filing process a lot smoother and a little less intimidating.

FIND OUT IF YOU NEED TO FILE

If you are under 65 years old, single, and your gross income is less than $9,750, you don’t necessarily need to file. This is the likely scenario for many students who are only making minimum wage or working part-time.

OBTAIN YOUR W-2 FORM

This is your proof of employment for the past year. If you worked multiple jobs, you will receive a W-2 form from each employer. They include the name & address of your employer, your wages, and what amount of your salary was withheld for taxes as well as state income tax. You will need all of this information while filling out your forms.

CHECK WITH YOUR PARENTS

If they are planning on claiming you as a dependent, you can’t claim a personal exemption on your own return. Sit down with your parents and all of your forms and determine what would be smartest way for everyone file. In order to qualify for being claimed as a dependent, you must be under the age of 19, unless you are a full-time student, in which case you can be claimed until age 24.

PLAN AHEAD

This will give you plenty of time to make sure that everything on your filing is correct and will eliminate the stress of trying to finish everything last minute before that April 15 deadline. This is also the opportunity to make sure you have taken advantage of all the tax breaks available to you.

PREP AND FILE TAXES FOR FREE

If your household income is less than $62,000, you can use the online IRS tax filing software at no cost. The IRS also offers VITA, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance group, which will help you prepare your taxes free of charge. You can find a location near you HERE.

As a Cyprus Credit Union member, you can also save up to $15 on TurboTax products for both home and business. Check out our website for more details.

Sources: IRS, NerdWallet

Topics: advice, how to, prepare, Resources, tax season, taxes, tips, Blog, Lifestyle

Author: Avery Mills