Filing Taxes For The First Time
As we reach adulthood, we start to encounter new challenges and responsibilities. One of these challenges is filing taxes for the first time. Filing taxes can seem intimidating, especially if you're unfamiliar with the process or don't have experience with financial matters. However, it's an important part of being a responsible adult and citizen. Whether you're a recent college graduate or a young professional, understanding the basics of taxes and the process of filing them can make the experience much less stressful. In this blog, we'll take a closer look at my first year of filing taxes and how I got started.
When tax season rolled around, I knew the minimum of what needed to be done. The first thing I did was print out all of my documents that I needed to give to my parents. These may include your W-2 form, which shows your earnings for the year, as well as any 1099 forms if you were an independent contractor or freelancer. Though I am not a freelancer, I still gathered all the documents I needed and gave it to my parents to give to our tax advisor.
The next step I took was figuring out my filing status. This could be one of five things: single, married but filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household, and qualifying widow(er). If you lived with your parents for most of 2022, then you can even file as exempt while your parents claim you as an independent. This also falls under a college student if your parents help you with half of your expenses. This doesn’t apply to me, so I chose to file as single. This means that the highest taxes will be pulled from my paychecks during the year.
After that, you usually need to begin to prepare to file your taxes. There are many ways to do this, but I chose to file with my parent’s tax advisor. If you do not plan to file alongside your parents, there are a variety of ways to prepare and file your taxes, from using tax software to hiring a tax professional. If you have a relatively simple tax situation, such as a single W-2 form and no itemized deductions, you may be able to use free tax software to file your taxes.
However, if you have a more complicated tax situation, it may be worth hiring a tax professional to ensure you get the best possible outcome.
Filing taxes for the first time, even with my parent’s help, was still stressful. But getting it done on time was my biggest concern. The deadline for filing taxes is typically April 15th, although this may vary depending on the year and your specific situation. Make sure you file your taxes on time to avoid penalties and interest charges. If you’re unable to file by the deadline, you can request an extension.
Overall, filing taxes for the first time can be a little overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. By gathering your documents, determining your filing status, choosing your tax preparation method, considering tax credits and deductions, and filing on time, you can ensure a smooth and stress-free experience. Good luck!
This article is not intended to provide specific legal, tax, or other professional advice. For specific professional assistance, the services of an appropriate professional should be sought.