1. Thank you for the help. This year I prepared for tax season by myself and I realized how disorganized I am. I may have to use a program to help me stay organized, as you mentioned. Do you think that or working with a tax preparation service would help me be more ready next year?

    • Hi Justin, Yes, organizing and staying organized is definitely worth it. When I was preparing returns in the private sector, we charged more for those who came in with boxes of receipts and boxes full of loose papers, etc. – for sure. So, yes, if you’re a paying customer, it’s definitely worth your while to get organized. You’ll learn more about what’s important, and save money. As for using a tax prep service, it really depends.

      If you’re the type of person who just doesn’t want anything to do with taxes, learning about them, or anything along those lines, then, yes, obviously it would be in your best interest to use a service. There are many many people out there who would rather pay for the service, and some don’t even mind paying extra when they do come in with their boxes…. 🙂 However, with that stated, I will remind those who would rather pay for a service that you must also understand your tax return when you sign it.

      The IRS holds each taxpayer responsible for his/her tax return, so blaming any type of mistake on your tax return service doesn’t get anyone too far. Conversely, if there are tax preparers out there who may be reading this, please remember that it is your responsibility to explain each tax return to your paying customer. Asking detailed questions during the interview and going over details at the end should ensure that the return is as accurate as possible with the information provided.
      Happy Tax Season!

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