Getting ready for tax time

By Keith Boles - bio | email feedback

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -By now most of us are starting to gather up the needed paperwork to file our taxes. But do we have everything we need? Also do you know about the new tax credits?

Every year tax laws change, sometimes for the better sometimes for the worse.

If you plan on doing your own taxes you need to be up on the latest credits and deductions.

If someone will be doing your taxes for you, it doesn't hurt to know about the changes so you can get the largest refund possible..

With tax laws and regulations being what they are I gave up doing my own a long time ago. Like many of us I turn to professional help like Rhonda Prine at Liberty Tax Service. Prine says one advantage to having a paid preparer do your taxes is their access to the latest information.

"May be things in our program that you wouldn't think to look for in say one of the free on line tax programs."

That being said let's get ready to file. What kinds of things does one need for your tax preparer?

2 important things are a social security card and a picture ID.

Also paperwork for big ticket items.

Prine, "If you bought a vehicle anything pertaining to that, If you bought a home anything pertaining to that. Any kind of taxes that you paid. Any interest that you might have gotten from your bank."

Prine also told me about the energy credit.

"Insulation, new type of roof, heating. Anything that is energy efficient, there's a credit for that and you don't have to long form to get it."

And don't forget those W-2's. And with A new year comeS new changes in tax paperwork. Changes that can mean more money back IN POCKET.

Prine says there are a lot of new tax credits that you may not be aware of.

"A big thing is you can claim 3 children on earned income this year. Which has never been done before."

2 was always the limit. Earned income meaning. You had to have worked to get this credit. It can't be unemployment, it can't be Social Security.

Another credit is the Make it Work credit for people that worked in 2009.

Unemployment compensation is a big thing this year.

You can earn up to 2400 before you have to pay taxes.

Prine, "If you did not draw over 2400 to still claim. Because if you put money in for taxes you can get it back."

Many of us will E-file to get a quick return. Another piece of paper to take with you to the tax people is your check book or deposit slip to make sure you have...

Prine, "You're routing number and your account number."

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