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5 Tips to Prepare for the 2023 Tax Filing Season

Matthew Levy Updated: May 18, 2023 • 4 min read
Tax season 2023
As the 2023 tax filing season approaches, it's important to start preparing early to ensure you have all the necessary documents, take advantage of deductions and credits, and avoid any potential delays. The process can be overwhelming, but with a little organization and planning, you can make it a smooth and stress-free experience. If you owe money to the IRS from last year or any previous years, you may consider consulting a tax preparation service. They provide a variety of help to people and can help resolve your debts with the IRS. The following tips will help you get organized and ready for the 2023 tax filing season, which officially kicks off on January 23, 2023 as the IRS begins accepting and processing returns.

Tip 1: Upload W-2s, 1099s and all other documentation to file online

Filing your taxes online is becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. Not only is it a convenient and efficient way to file, but it also helps to avoid delays in processing. When you file your taxes online, the information is sent directly to the IRS and is processed much faster than paper returns. This means that you will receive your refund or any correspondence from the IRS in a timely manner. Additionally, e-filing eliminates the risk of lost or delayed mail and reduces the chance of errors on your return. By filing your taxes online, you can ensure that your return is processed quickly and accurately. Last year, those who chose to file their taxes offline were subjected to a long backlog and delays in processing. This year will be more of the same, and submitting a paper tax return is highly likely to result in a large delay of any refund to be processed – unlike the approximately 21 days the IRS claims it will take with an online filer with direct deposit information. Filing taxes online easy

Tip 2: Be prepared for a smaller return this year

The 2021 tax year was a boon for most tax filers, in terms of getting refunds. There were several reasons for this, including government stimulus, enhanced child tax credits and pandemic-era tax breaks for charitable deductions. Interestingly, it looks like there will be more taxable investment gains this year than in 2021, despite a volatile stock market. To expand on that, in 2021, a lot of taxpayers received government stimulus in what was termed a recovery rebate credit – increasing their tax refund in 2022. That is nixed this year, which could leave some shock for taxpayers expecting to receive similar amounts back this year.

Tip 3: Report all of your income – including gig work

In 2023, it is important to include all of your gig income in your tax filing. This includes any income you have earned from freelance work, online sales, ride-sharing, or any other gig economy jobs. Even if you only earned a small amount of money from these activities, it is still considered taxable income and must be reported on your tax return. It is also important to keep accurate records of your gig income, such as invoices or receipts, as you will need to provide this information to the IRS. If you're unsure about how to report your gig income, it's recommended to consult with a tax professional or use tax software to make sure you're in compliance with the tax laws. Not reporting your gig income can result in fines and penalties from the IRS, so it's important to be diligent and accurate in your reporting.

Tip 4: Keep track of important dates

With the tax season in full swing, there are several important dates to put into your calendar. Here are a few to note: 2023 IRS tax return deadlines

Tip 5: Don’t delay getting tax help if you need it

If you suspect that you’ll be unable to pay your taxes this year due to financial hardship, or if you’re carrying a balance with the IRS from previous years, many Americans find it helpful to consult the help of a tax relief service. Reputable tax relief companies can help resolve your debts and disputes by the IRS, represent you during an audit, file past-due returns, and negotiate payment plans for settlements with the IRS for unpaid taxes. When researching tax relief companies, however, it’s critical to do a thorough check to ensure they’re transparent, ethical and have successfully assisted others in similar situations.

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Putting it all Together

The 2023 tax season can be a smooth and stress-free process if you take the time to prepare ahead. Spending some time dedicated to your tax filing early will help you reduce stress, and you can ensure that your return is filed accurately and on time. Be sure to gather all necessary documentation, such as W-2s and 1099s, take advantage of all of your tax deductions and credits, double-check your deductions and credits for accuracy, and e-file your return or hire a tax professional. By following these tips, you can increase your chances of getting the maximum refund or reducing your tax liability. If you need some help, visit irs.gov, use their free online tools or call the IRS help line. And remember, being prepared and organized with every step of the tax filing process, including getting help with tax relief if you need it, is essential for a stress-free 2023 tax filing season.  

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Written by Matthew Levy twitter-icon

Matthew is a freelance financial copywriter with 10+ years in financial services. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics with business and finance options and is a CFA Charterholder. He is from Vancouver, Canada, but writes from all over the world.