LEWISTOWN - With the tax filing deadline approaching next Wednesday, April 15, the IRS offers a variety of tips for those still working on their tax returns.
The first tip is to file taxes electronically instead of using paper tax forms, the IRS Web site indicates.
"If you file electronically and choose direct deposit, you can receive your refund in as few as 10 days," the site states.
Next, identification numbers should be checked. The IRS especially suggests checking Social Security numbers for each person listed.
"This includes you, your spouse, dependents and persons listed in relation to claims for the Child and Dependent Care Credit or Earned Income Tax Credit," the Web site states. "Missing, incorrect or illegible Social Security numbers can delay or reduce a tax refund."
Another tip is to double check figures. Those who are filing a paper return should make sure the refund or balance due is correctly figured out.
Also, tax tables should be checked. Those filing with the Free Fillable Forms or a paper return should double check that the right figure from the tax table has been used, the site states.
Taxpayers also are advised to sign and date their returns. Both spouses must sign a join return, even if only one had income. In addition, anyone paid to prepare a return must also sign it.
To mail a return, the IRS advises people to use the coded envelope included with their tax package. Those who did not receive an envelope should check the section, "Where Do You File?" in the tax instruction booklet, according to the site.
Those who send a payment should make the check out to "United States Treasury," and should enclose the check, but not attach it to the tax return or the Form 1040-V, Payment Voucher, if used. The check should include the taxpayer's Social Security number, daytime phone number, the tax year and the type of form filed.
The IRS also advises people to use electronic payment options. Taxpayers can authorize an electronic funds withdrawal, or use a credit card or a debit card.
"They are convenient, safe and secure methods for paying taxes," the site states.
By April 15, taxpayers should either file a return or request an extension of time to file. The extension of time to file is not an extension of time to pay.
For forms and publications, or more information, visit www.IRS.gov.