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83 votes

Why would the IRS ask for birth certificates or even audit a small tax return?

For people that don't earn very much, the largest single financial event of the year is often getting a large tax refund thanks to the Earned Income Credit and the Child Tax Credit. These refundable ...
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79 votes
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Taxes when transferring money

I would respond to your friend this way: "Either you are planning to do something illegal, in which case I don't want to be involved, or you are planning to do something legal, in which case you don't ...
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  • 45.7k
76 votes

What do I do if my income is just a little too high for "free file"?

What they're charging you $30 for is the ability to get your refund sooner. If you don't want to pay for that ability, then maybe it's time for you to learn to do taxes the old fashioned way (kinda)....
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74 votes
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Is one spouse responsible if other failed to file taxes

The IRS has a concept of Innocent Spouse Relief which is intended to handle situations like this. They describe it thoroughly on their website. A married couple technically both have responsibility ...
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  • 16.8k
67 votes

Accountant/ lawyer will not return my call

This sounds like a scam. The IRS sends notices of amounts due, they don't enlist 3rd party services for that. The IRS does make use of 4 different 3rd party collection agencies: CBE - P.O. ...
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64 votes
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In the USA, why is the Free File software only available for people earning less than $62k?

It is very helpful to understand that Free File is not actually "by" the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS does indeed offer access to the program through their website, but Free File is ...
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  • 11.6k
61 votes

Do I pay gift taxes in US, if I send money (>$15000) to my father in India?

What is considered a gift?Any transfer to an individual, either directly or indirectly, where full consideration (measured in money or money's worth) is not received in return. https://www.irs.gov/...
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58 votes
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What is the best way to pay large tax amount owed to IRS?

Of the options you've listed, setting up a payment plan with the IRS is the best, cheapest option. The current interest rate from the IRS is 6%. This interest rate is updated once every three months ...
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41 votes

Robocall claiming to be IRS saying they are about to sue - Is it legit?

You explained nicely in your own answer how to report and react to this obvious scam. Let me explain why it is an obvious scam by explaining how the IRS works when you owe them something. When you ...
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  • 131k
40 votes
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IRS sent me a letter...I messed up by unwittingly taking money out of a Roth IRA and reporting it incorrectly

There could be a few reasons for this, my first guess is that you didn't report the distribution on your return (indicated on line 15 of your 1040, pictured below), the IRS got a copy of the 1099-R, ...
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  • 64.6k
37 votes

What do I do if my income is just a little too high for "free file"?

If your adjusted gross income (AGI) is over $66k, you don't qualify for the free tax filing software anymore, per the IRS Free File site (link). Some options: Pay for tax preparation software Use ...
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  • 1,095
37 votes

How does the government shutdown affect tax returns?

During the partial shutdown of the US Federal government, the IRS will continue to collect tax and process income tax returns, but refunds will not be paid out until the shutdown has ended. There ...
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35 votes

Will depositing $10k+ checks each month raise red flags with the IRS?

You're getting confused between several different things. 10K - cash transactions over $10,000 are reported to FinCEN under BSA. This is to prevent money laundering. IRS - IRS wants to see your tax ...
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  • 131k
35 votes
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How to handle the Equifax Breach this tax season?

My advice is to stop worrying about it. File your taxes normally as you have done in previous years. If someone files a fraudulent return electronically in your name, you will find out when you try ...
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32 votes
Accepted

If IRS instructions for Form 1040 are not available, should taxpayers wait to file until they are published?

Tax filing doesn't open this year until January 27, which is "when the tax agency will begin accepting and processing 2019 tax year returns". I assume you could mail in your return before that date, ...
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  • 14.7k
31 votes

I am distributing an inheritance based on verbal bequests. Is this considered a gift that must be reported to the IRS?

You say that you inherited the money from your mother, and are now paying these people using money that is already yours. Because of that, the money is considered a gift from you to them, and the ...
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30 votes

Why would a previous year's tax deductions affect the current year's taxes?

Last year you deducted all of the state tax that was withheld from your paycheck in 2016 off of your income. But then you did your 2016 state income tax return, and the state sent you some of that ...
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29 votes
Accepted

Does the amount owed listed in my account on irs.gov include both federal and state taxes owed?

Nope, the IRS just deals with federal. You'll have to work with your state's department/office of revenue to settle up with them.
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  • 64.6k
27 votes
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How is the taxable value of a goat determined?

Replace goats with a foreign currency, or in fact any product with a market value, and it becomes self evident. As far as your Tax office is concerned it's the dollar value at that point in time. ...
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26 votes

In the USA, why is the Free File software only available for people earning less than $62k?

Free File is not software by the IRS. Free File is actually a partnership between the IRS and the Free File Alliance, a group of tax software companies. The software companies have all agreed to ...
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26 votes

Does the IRS reprieve those who have to commute for work?

No. Regular W2 employees cannot deduct housing or transportation costs related to their employment. However, in the US, many employers offer Parking and/or Transit FSA programs which are usually ...
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  • 48.6k
26 votes
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What does an IRS interview request entail when called in to verify expenses for a sole proprietor small business?

Should I hire a tax person to represent me? Or go in myself? I'm just afraid of saying the wrong stuff. I can't tell you whether or not you should hire someone, but here are some things you should ...
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  • 64.6k
24 votes

How does IRS know if my dependent is an actual relative for Head of Household?

This appears to be something that is done on the honor system. The biggest check the IRS does is with the social security number. They will make sure that nobody else is claiming your half-brother. ...
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23 votes

What is the meaning about the IRS saying that "copy A" is scannable but the online version printed is not scannable?

The IRS will not accept any version of this form if you print it out on your own printer. Otherwise, why wouldn't they just provide you with a way to print it out? They accept e-file or a ...
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23 votes

What is the meaning about the IRS saying that "copy A" is scannable but the online version printed is not scannable?

Joshua's comment to another answer, "the red copy can't be scanned" is close, but actually it is the reverse! Historically, many IRS forms used red for the pre-printed information, with the ...
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22 votes

Will depositing $10k+ checks each month raise red flags with the IRS?

Contractors regularly deposit checks like this; if the income is legitimate don't worry. Report it to the IRS as income whether or not the customer issues you a 1099. With deposits like this you ...
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  • 2,790
22 votes
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Get a human when calling the IRS hotline 800-829-1040 with a question about your taxes?

Do the following to get to a human. No need to wait for the bot to talk, just press the key once you hear the bots say something so you can get to a real person quickly.. When they ask for SS#, just ...
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22 votes
Accepted

I e-filed my taxes ONE SECOND after the deadline - am I in trouble?

It certainly seems like they could consider this late, but that's really up to them to decide if they want to hold you to the second or not. If they do, however, consider appealing the fee. From the ...
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