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Preparing for 2023 tax season: steps and tips for filing federal income tax returns early in 2024

Preparing for 2023 tax season: steps and tips for filing federal income tax returns early in 2024

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is gearing up for the upcoming tax season and urges taxpayers to start preparing to file their 2023 federal income tax returns.

This reminder is part of the IRS's "Get Ready" campaign aimed at ensuring smooth and accurate tax filing in early 2024.

Creating an online account for easy access

Taxpayers are encouraged to set up or access their IRS Online Account.

This platform offers a wealth of information, such as viewing key data from the most recently filed tax return, accessing account transcripts, managing power of attorney and tax information authorizations, receiving electronic notices, and overseeing payments and payment plans.

Organizing tax records

A key step in preparing for tax season is to organize tax records. This includes gathering Forms W-2, Forms 1099-MISC, and other income documents.

It's important to remember that most types of income are taxable, including unemployment compensation, gig economy earnings, and income from digital assets. 

Additionally, taxpayers should notify the IRS of any address or legal name changes.

Adjusting tax withholding

Taxpayers are advised to use the IRS Tax Withholding Estimator to ensure the correct amount of tax is being withheld from their paychecks.

This is especially important for those who have experienced significant life changes. Adjustments to federal tax withholding can be made by submitting a new Form W-4 to employers.

Opting for direct deposit for refunds

Direct deposit is recommended as the fastest and safest method to receive tax refunds. Taxpayers can direct their refunds to bank accounts, banking apps, or reloadable debit cards.

Those without a bank account are guided to resources for opening an account at FDIC-insured banks or credit unions.

Volunteer opportunities

The IRS invites individuals to become IRS-certified volunteers through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs.

These programs offer free tax preparation assistance to eligible taxpayers.

Utilizing resources is a comprehensive resource for taxpayers, offering various online tools for filing and paying taxes, tracking refunds, and answering tax questions.

Choosing a reliable tax professional

The IRS advises taxpayers to carefully choose their tax return preparers, as selecting an unqualified or unethical preparer can have financial repercussions.

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Bottom line

The IRS is committed to providing taxpayers with the necessary tools and information for a smooth tax filing experience.

By taking these preparatory steps and utilizing available resources, taxpayers can ensure accurate and timely filing of their 2023 federal income tax returns.

Ines Zemelman, EA
Founder of TFX