A quick Internet guide to getting your freaking taxes done
Man, there's nothing like the middle of April, right? The weather’s starting to get nice, we've got some holidays coming up… oh crap, and there’s Tax Day. Yes indeed, April 15 has arrived once again and if you’re reading this and about to frantically dig through your desk looking for your W-2, then you’re experiencing what we in the biz call a “time crunch.”
This is the adult equivalent of leaving your summer book report until the last day before school and being like "awww, crap." Except this time, your mom isn't going to stay up late and help/harass you.
But fear not! You aren’t automatically going to go on the IRS’ watch list. There are a few options left for all the procrastinators out there. And you don’t need to find the nearest H&R Block; the Internet is all you need, friend.
The first thing you need to know:
Is that you have until April 15 at midnight to get this done.
Secondly, you can file for an extension.
Your best option is to try and get an extension on your taxes. Most online file solutions like TurboTax, E-File, and the IRS’ site can get you a six month extension on turning that bad boy in. So if you can’t even find your W-2 or 1040 or whatever (and, cards on the table, you just drank an entire bottle of wine and were about to dive into Sunday’s episode of Game of Thrones) maybe just take a few minutes to fill that out.
… Once you do file that extension, you had better set an alert to remind you a week before it’s up. Because knowing you, you’re apt to repeat this exact scenario in half a year’s time. Oct. 15 will come faster than you know. Make that GCal alert now.
Or you can do it now
If you made less than $58,000 this year (no judgement), you can use the IRS’s free file software. Of course you can also hit up TurboTax or H&R Block as well, but if you’ve used them in the past and for some reason or other ended up paying, then the IRS’ own software is another online option.
Don’t get scammed
FYI, the IRS is not going to email you or call you demanding you to pay your taxes. If someone rings you up or shoots you an email being all “hey just read me those debit card digits!” back away. Back away slowly.
Twitter for taxes
There are, surprisingly, some great resources tweeting last minute tax help. Here’s a short list of tax lawyers, experts, and companies who you can tweet at for some help as you’re trying to get this done; they will likely either be tweeting some general advice or you can personally @ mention them to try and get your own questions answered.
Also, you might catch some awesome "tax day freebies" being tweeted by these handles. Consider it a nice way to ease the blow of such a terrible day. Or as your reward for spending your sick day dealing with this crap.
For the truly stumped and desperate, you can hit up JustAnswer to try and get some answers on your taxes while filling them out.
photo by peddhapati/flickr (CC BY 2.0)