How much money do you have to make to file taxes?… What is the minimum income to file taxes?…
These types of common tax questions have been asked over & over again on forums and message boards all across the web.
It’s a Good Question with Multiple Answers. Read on...
The requirements will vary depending on 3 Major Factors: Your Age, Filing Status, and Type of Income You Receive. For example: At the end of 2012, if you were single and under 65 and earned a gross income of least 9,750, then you need to file. And at the end of 2012, if you were single and over 65 and had a gross income of at least 11,200, then you need to file.
These filing requirement variations can go on & on all day long. Again, it all depends on the 3 Major factors of Age, Filing Status and Income Type Received. IRS 1040 Manual gives further details concerning the question of “How much money do you have to make to file taxes?” (Once there if you scroll down about an inch you will see a chart that breaks different scenarios down for you.)
Or view the chart below which is a quick summary for the 2012 Tax Year highlighting the Tax Filing Requirements for most people:
(chart age reference means under 65 or 65+ – at the end of 2012)
NOTE: This is the latest info that I’ve found. Tax laws change like the wind which is why it’s always best to consult with your personal accountant or tax professional. This article is for informational purposes only.
Are you SURE you’re an employee???
You may think that you’re an employee BUT you could actually be an independent contractor (self-employed individual) and not even realize it!
Well I’ve got news for you…
If your job surprising doesn’t take any taxes out your check – and you receive a 1099 rather than a W2 during tax season — Then YOU my friend are considered a self-employed individual in the eyes of the Government, and YOU are responsible for paying personal taxes and subject to self-employment tax as well.
Many employers have been “hiring” people like this in order to avoid the expenses of hiring “real employees” while still maintaining complete control over you as an employee – even though you’re not. But that’s a whole ‘nother story. Now I’m not trying to get you all revved-up about your job because we all need to keep food on the table — but hey that’s the real scoop!
As an employee, you should receive W2 forms that reports your earnings for the year. If you were an independent contractor then you should receive a 1099 form. If you were both, then expect to get both. When you file, in order to maximize your return and lessen the amount of taxes that you owe, be sure to deduct as many legitimate items as possible. Consult with with your accountant or tax professional for best results.
April 15th is the deadline for filing your Federal individual income tax return. If you miss this date you can request an extension. But I advise you to do everything in your power NOT to miss the deadline. Just get this tax stuff out the way to avoid extra hassle, fees and delay.
Filing When You Don’t Have To
Filing even when you don’t have to is not a bad idea. It could turn out to be very beneficial for you! If you’ve earned any Federal Income or Earned Income Credit (EIC), it is recommended that you file anyway – because you may be able to get a return. You definitely don’t want to leave money on the table now do you?…didn’t think so.
The IRS puts it like this: “Refund. Even if you do not have to file a tax return, you should file to get a refund if box 2 shows federal income tax withheld or if you can take the earned income credit…” See this W2 example and once there just scroll down past the form for details. If you don’t take time to enlighten yourself about this tax stuff, Uncle Sam definitely won’t chase you down to give you your money. And they make that very clear in their own words.
Free Vs. Paid Tax Assistance
If you just can’t afford to hire a Tax professional to work on your behalf, there are a few places you may be able to get them done absolutely free. You can check your local government offices or do a “free tax” search online. However, I don’t trust or recommend them.
Completely free tax route should be last resort in my opinion. It’s like getting a Public Defender to defend you in a legal case. Who do you think will work harder for YOU: A Free Public Defender hired by the State/Government – Or – Your own Personal Attorney hired by YOU to work specifically in your best interest? …nuff said.
See, it’s the same with taxes. Keep in mind: The Government is not in the business of giving away money. They want to keep every penny they can possibly get ~ You Can Bank On That!
I’d much rather file through an independent tax service like TurboTax (which does offer a free version for simple tax returns) rather than trusting some government program. But hey that’s just me!
Final Word From Me…
Ok now move your head a little closer to the screen and listen v e r r r y closely, I’m only going to say this once!
THE GOVERNMENT WILL NOT REFUND ANY MONEY OWED TO YOU IF YOU FAIL TO FILE. THEY WILL NOT TELL YOU. THEY WILL JUST KEEP YOUR MONEY. THEY ARE NOT IN THE BUSINESS OF PAYING OUT MONEY VOLUNTARILY.
THERE ARE BILLIONS OF UNCLAIMED FUNDS SITTING INSIDE THE GOVERNMENT BANK VAULT RIGHT NOW AS WE SPEAK — COLLECTING BIG FAT INTEREST FOR THEM. YOU MUST CLAIM YOUR MONEY TO GET IT. IF YOU DON’T, THEN THEY CONSIDER IT FAIR GAME TO KEEP IT.
DON’T LEAVE MONEY ON THE TABLE — DON’T LEAVE MONEY ON THE TABLE. And did I Mention → DO NOT LEAVE MONEY ON THE TABLE!!!
Ok there!… and I meant to Yell. Are your ears buzzing?… GOOD:-) Now at least I know these words will ring in your ears every time you think the thought “oh I don’t need to file taxes”. Now at least when you think about how much money do you have to make to file taxes you’ll think twice…because now you know you just might have money waiting for you!