The holiday season is over and a whole new season is approaching.
It might be a new year but it's not quite time to forget the old one; at least when it comes to how much money you made. And as you prepare to haul out your receipts and file your tax return experts say there are some big mistakes that could cost you.
For example avoid using a pen and paper. Tax officers say it would be foolish not to efile. Not only is it faster but you avoid the possibility of making simple mistakes. And if you do bring in some outside help check their credentials. There are 800,000 people in the country who prepare tax returns and most of them are unregulated. That's because there's no licensing requirement for someone to call themselves a tax preparer.
To be safe look for someone who's either a certified public accountant or an enrolled agent. But the biggest mistake you could make is missing the deadline; plus filing earlier means a faster return. Too bad it's not a season worth celebrating.