If you're stuck at home for the foreseeable future, there's no better time to do your taxes. Here's everything you need to get started.
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- Millions of Americans are being urged to stay indoors as the coronavirus stakes its claim on the country.
- Whether the IRS decides to postpone the tax-filing deadline as a result of the financial chaos remains to be seen.
- If you're staying home for the foreseeable future, there's plenty of time to file your taxes.
- Read more personal finance coverage.
There's absolutely no good time for a pandemic like the coronavirus outbreak to happen. It's especially inopportune in the middle of a pivotal presidential election, the longest-running bull stock market, and tax season.
Despite hinting at extending the tax-filing deadline beyond April 15, neither the IRS nor the Trump administration has made any official announcement about tax relief for individual taxpayers or businesses.
In the meantime, employers nationwide are requesting that employees work from home, if their job allows it, and many states and cities are urging residents to stay indoors as events are canceled en masse and restaurants and bars close their doors indefinitely. Needless to say, millions of us may suddenly have a lot of extra time on our hands.
Whether Americans are granted additional time to file (and perhaps more time to pay), anyone who isn't sick or directly impacted by the coronavirus should use a few hours of their newfound free time to file taxes.
It may be tempting to put off filing in hopes that the IRS does extend the deadline, but if you're owed a tax refund, you won't get it until you file (the IRS is still processing returns and paying out refunds as of now, but that could change, of course).
Rumor has it that the IRS may waive penalties and/or interest for those who owe taxes, but that only postpones your payment to a later date, and it's not easy to tell how long this financial downturn could last. If you have the money to pay your bill now, you might as well do it.
Here's all the information you need to file your taxes:
How to file:
- Everything you need to know about how to file your taxes
- How to decide whether to do your own taxes or hire a pro
- How to find out if you qualify for free tax filing
- How to decide whether to file jointly or separately with your spouse
- How to file an amended tax return
- How to get a tax extension
Where to file:
- See Business Insider's picks for the best tax software
- H&R Block review
- TurboTax review
- TaxAct review
- E-File.com review
- FreeTaxUSA review
- TaxSlayer review
- Credit Karma Tax vs. H&R Block
- TurboTax vs. H&R Block
- Credit Karma Tax vs. TurboTax
- Find out if you can deduct college tuition and expenses
- Common deductions you don't want to miss
- If you're an active member of the military, you might be able to deduct your moving expenses
- When home improvements are tax deductible
- When your family's medical expenses are tax deductible
- When to expect your federal tax refund
- When to expect your state tax refund
- Why you should reconsider paying an online filing fee through your refund
- How to contact the IRS if you haven't received your refund
- What to do with your tax refund to build wealth
- Why it's OK to get a small refund
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