Ten Common Mistakes Tax Filers Make

Don’t you hate that thought of getting your taxes done only to realize later that you make a common mistake that could cost you time or money? The tax code seems to be getting more and more complicated every year (500 changes alone in 2008), and we all seem to be strapped for time these days. Here are 10 mistakes we see taxpayers make all the time which could put a few dollars in your pocket this tax season.

1) If you are single and are caring for an elderly parent, you should investigate seeing if you qualify for ‘head of household’ for your filing status. As a general rule of thumb, you should be paying for 50% or more of the elderly parent’s expenses.

2) You should make sure you have kept track of your charitable mileage that you drove during the year. Eligible miles will have a .14 cents on the mile write off on your tax return if you itemized your deductions.

3) Verify all of the information on the w-2 and/or 1099 information that you get come tax time. If for some reason the information is inaccurate, then notify the issuer immediately so you can get a newly issued document.

4) If you worked for more than one employer during the course of the year, you should check how much money you actually paid into social security to ensure that you didn’t overpay. You should claim a credit for any excess Social Security taxes withheld from your overall wages.

5) If you got a state refund for the prior year, remember that you must include those amounts as income on your federal tax return.

6) If you had expenses during the year such as mileage, meals, and entertainment that were unreimbursed by your employer, consider filling out form 2106 to see if you can deduct those from your tax return.

7) Make sure to include your Social Security number on every single page if you file a paper return. This is also true if you have to send in checks to the IRS for monies owed at the end of the tax year.

8) Taking a home office deduction when your employer already has an office for you.

9) Ignoring the IRS. If the IRS sends you documents regarding any questions about any part of your tax return, make sure you respond to them promptly. Many people believe that it is a good idea to wait for the document for a second or third time. This could cause you undue penalties or interest on money you owe.

10) Your math skills are rusty. So many mistakes are made or overlooked simply from poor arithmetic. Make sure to use a calculator and double or triple check your math. You would hate to have to answer to the IRS just because of poor addition, subtraction, or multiplication.

Visit to www.oxygenfinancial.net  to request a free consultation with the leading financial experts for people in their 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s in the country.

Written by:

Ted Jenkin, CFP®, AAMS®, AWMA®, CRPC®, CMFC®, CRPS®

Co-CEO and Founder of oXYGen Financial, Inc – The Leaders in Gen X & Y Financial Advice

Securities and Investment Advisory Services offered through NFP Advisor Services, LLC (NFPAS), Member FINRA/SIPC. Oxygen Financial is not affiliated with NFPAS. NFPAS does not provide tax or legal advice.   This site is published for residents of the United States only. Registered Representatives and Investment Advisor Representatives of NFP Advisor Services, LLC (NFPAS) may only conduct business with residents of the states and jurisdictions in which they are properly registered. Therefore, a response to a request for information may be delayed. Not all products and services referenced on this site are available in every state and through every representative or advisor listed. For additional information, please contact NFPAS Compliance Department at 512-697-6000.   PLEASE NOTE: The information being provided is strictly as a courtesy. When you link to any of the web sites provided here, you are leaving this web site. NFP Advisor Services, LLC makes no representation as to the completeness or accuracy of information provided at these web sites. Nor is NFP Advisor Services, LLC liable for any direct or indirect technical or system issues or any consequences arising out of your access to or your use of third-party technologies, web sites, information and programs made available through this web site. When you access one of these web sites, you are leaving our web site and assume total responsibility and risk for your use of the web sites you are linking to.


About the author  ⁄ Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Ted Jenkin has spent the past 23 years giving personal financial advice to thousands of people across the United States. After graduating from Boston College in 1991, Ted spent more than 16 years working for American Express Financial Advisors/Ameriprise Financial. He was one of the youngest people in the history of the company to reach both Field Vice President and Group Vice President level. He managed more than 800 financial advisors throughout 8 states in his last position with the company.In 2008, Ted founded oXYGen Financial to help revolutionize the financial services industry by creating a new company that focused on serving the X and Y Generation. oXYGen Financial now has more than 2,200 clients throughout 25 states across the country many coming from social media techniques. Ted has been featured in over 30 magazines and newspapers including the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, and The Huffington Post. He was on the cover of Registered Rep magazine and featured in the ‘what will financial planning look like in 2023’ article done by Financial Planning Magazine. He has six advanced designations from the College for Financial Planning (CFP®, CRPC®, CRPS®, AWMA®, AAMS®, CMFC®) and is an on air radio personality.

One Comment

  • March 20, 2012

    A lot of these tips also ring true for Canadians (^_-) Lots of people making these mistakes.