Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Here comes Uncle Sam.....

Here we are again, coming up on April 15th, that infamous deadline day for filing your income tax.

Back in the day when I was young & single I always did my own income tax. I didn't have a mortgage, didn't own a house, etc. It was very simple, cut, & dry. I had no itemized deductions, just took the standard deduction. I saw no point in paying someone to do my taxes for me.

Back then if your form didn't arrive in the mail you went to the post office to get it. In the book that went with the form it would tell you what bracket you were in. It's really very simple--based on your income bracket you have to pay a set certain amount of tax. From that amount you would subtract your standard deduction & then see how much you had already paid (what they've withheld from your paychekcs) & from that you determine if you overpaid (get a refund) or underpaid (owe more money). I know the last couple of years it was getting harder to get the forms. I think I had finally given in & was doing the phone version, which I didn't like cuz you couldn't see the brackets & what you owed--how did you know the phone deal was being honest & not overcharging you???? Although I would bet you could print the forms from the internet these days & find the books online too.

Anyways, my point is that it's a very cut & dry process (unless you are itemizing or have some other complicatied stuff going on). My point is also that looking up your brakcet in a book was a helpful thing that helped you visibly see & understand the whole process. And what I'm seeing today in the young genenration is that they don't have a clue about this process. They have this idea that the govt just makes up a random amount for each person to pay or that the amount they pay should depend on circumstances (not just the amount of income you earned, which is how it really works). They have this idea that who you go to to get your taxes done can somehow magically change all the rules. There are so many variables involved in withholdings & dependents, etc that you really can't be comparing yourself to others & yet that's what I see the young people doing all the time.

Ho hum........I suppose I'm just being old fashioned & resistant to the changing of the times & how taxes are there anyone out there still doing their taxes with the books & paper forms?????? Does the 1040EZ still exist????

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