As we kick off a new calendar year, we also enter a new tax season. This year, taxes are due Monday, April 15th and while that may sound far away, there are advantages to filing your taxes as soon as possible.
First, the sooner you file your taxes (especially electronically), the sooner you get your refund. The combination of electronic filing and direct deposit has proven to be the quickest way to get your refund. Once you submit your return, the IRS anticipates that more than 90% of refunds will be issued within 21 days of receipt.
The second reason you want to file your taxes early is because it can prevent identity theft. In recent years, criminals have become savvier at filing phony tax returns using the identification information of consumers. The IRS only accepts one return per social security number which is why many victims first realize their information has been stolen when they unsuccessfully try to file their return. If you file early, you can substantially reduce the possibility of having a false return filed in your name.
Before filing, make sure you have received all of your appropriate tax documentation. This might include your W-2, 1099, mortgage interest statement and more. Once you have all of your necessary documents, it is a good idea to move the process along as quickly as possible to access your refund and prevent falling victim to tax identity theft.
For information and tips on filing your taxes, visit irs.gov.