The 2022 tax season is officially underway, and just like the last couple of years, there are a few unique considerations for tax filers to keep in mind.
In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about deadlines, tax refunds, and how you can file your taxes online.
Let’s jump right in!
What Is the Tax Filing Deadline in 2022?
For most Americans, the tax filing deadline is April 18, 2022.
However, if you live in Maine or Massachusetts, you have an additional day, until April 19, to file your returns due to Patriots’ Day holidays in both those states.
The tax deadline is typically April 15th, but according to the IRS, any holidays in Washington DC affect everyone the same way that all federal holidays do. This year, Emancipation Day in Washington DC happens to fall on April 16th, which is a Saturday. Per the law, if Emancipation Day falls on a Saturday, then the previous business day (in this case the 15th) becomes the “observed holiday.” Since April 15th will be an observed holiday in 2022, the tax deadline has been pushed to the next business day, which is Monday the 18th.
Please note that the April 18 deadline is closer back to normalcy than we’ve been accustomed to, so the filing deadline might come faster than you expect.
In both 2020 and 2021, the tax filing deadline was pushed back due to the pandemic (July 15, 2020, and May 17, 2021, respectively). If it weren’t for Emancipation Day falling on a Saturday, we would be back to the usual April 15 tax deadline.
If you are requesting an extension, you will have until Monday, October 17, 2022, to file.
When Will I Get My Tax Refund?
Even though we’re getting closer back to normal, there are still complexities due to the pandemic. Traditionally, most people get their refunds within 6-8 weeks of the IRS receiving their return.
4 Smart Ways to Use Your Tax RefundRead Post
In 2022, we can still expect some delays. Here are key points to keep in mind:
- The IRS is expecting delays in terms of processing tax returns and sending out tax refunds. Why? Due to the complexities of tax credits and economic impact payments, there will be more “manual processing” this year than usual. The IRS has hired additional agents to help move through the process, but delays should still be expected and planned for accordingly.
- There was a larger and fully refundable Child Tax Credit in 2021. For the 2021 tax year, the usual $2,000 child tax credit was bumped up to $3,000 per dependent ages 6 to 17, and from $2,000 to $3,600 for children age 5 or younger.
- If you’re missing an Economic Impact Payment, you can claim the Recovery Rebate Credit. Most Americans were eligible for and received an Economic Impact Payment in 2021. However, if you were eligible for the stimulus but did not receive the check due to lost mail or a government error, you can claim the missing amount on your tax return thanks to the “Recovery Rebate Credit.”
Due to potential delays, the IRS is encouraging all tax filers to file their returns as soon as possible. This will help prevent any backlogs in the system and will increase the chances of receiving your refund in a timely manner.
How Can I File Taxes Online with the IRS?
Anyone can file a tax return online through the IRS website.
There are two options that the IRS itself provides.
Guided Tax Preparation is only available to households that have an adjusted gross income (AGI) of $73,000 or less. Taxes can be confusing, frustrating, and time-consuming, so the Guided Tax Preparation does all the math for you. The tax filing is done on that IRS partner website that you select, all of which are vetted by the IRS, so you can rest assured that your information is safe.
This comes at no cost to qualifying taxpayers. To give you an idea of some of the resources that are part of Guided Tax Preparation, providers include:
- And many more
Learn more about IRS Free File.
This option is available to all tax filers regardless of income. However, you won’t have the professional support or guidance from the IRS Free File. Rather, the Free File Fillable Forms is essentially a way to file your taxes electronically, rather than doing it by hand and physically mailing in your tax return.
You should only choose the Free File Fillable Forms if you are comfortable doing your own taxes. Unlike the first option, you won’t receive guidance about your unique tax situation. Furthermore, there isn’t software on the IRS site that provides error checking and there is no ability to make any changes once the return is accepted.
File Online Through Taxslayer
If you don’t qualify for IRS Free File or if you have a unique tax situation where you’d like more guidance and premium benefits, one of the resources I recommend is Taxslayer.
What is TaxSlayer?
TaxSlayer is a leading provider of online tax preparation software and services. The company offers free federal income tax filing, efile, and refund anticipation loans (called “refundNOW”).
TaxSlayer was founded in 1965 and has grown into a global leader in the field of tax preparation. Today, TaxSlayer provides its services through a network of over 2,500 independent franchisees located throughout the United States.
TaxSlayer is committed to providing its customers with high-quality service at competitive prices. In addition, the company strives to provide its clients with accurate information and clear explanations regarding their taxes.
What do you need to file your return?
You will need:
- Your Social Security Number
- A valid email address
- Your bank account number
- Your filing status (single or married)
- Your W2s from last year
- Your estimated tax payments for this year
- Any other required forms (e.g., 1099's, etc.)
How does it work?
First, you'll want to sign up for an account Signing up for an account is easy! Simply click on “Start for Free” on the TaxSlayer homepage. You'll be prompted to enter your name and email address.
Next, choose your plan. Once you've signed up, you can choose which plan best fits your needs. There are three plans available: Free, Classic, Premium, and Self-Employed. Each plan comes with different features.
Get started! After signing up, you're ready to get started! Click on “Start Now.”
What is My Filing Status?
One of the reasons that people choose IRS Free File or to hire a tax preparer is because the verbiage surrounding taxes can sound a lot like “mumbo jumbo.”
Still, one of the important things you’ll need to know is your filing status for 2022.
The IRS has five main tax filing statuses: single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household, and qualifying widow(er) with dependent child. Each of these filing statuses determines who pays taxes and how much they pay.
Married Filing Jointly (MFJ): Most married couples opt to file jointly. This means that both spouses must be listed on the same form and each spouse must report their own taxable income as well as any deductions or credits claimed by either spouse.
Married Filing Separately (MFS): A married couple may choose to file separate returns if one spouse earns significantly more than the other. In this case, only one spouse will need to file a return. The remaining spouse can claim all available deductions and exemptions for themselves and their dependents. There are other strategies or reasons why couples might decide to file separately, but it's generally best to consult with an accountant to make sure you're making the best choice.
4 Money Decisions You Will Regret LaterRead Post
Head Of Household (HOH): If you live in your own home and have a qualified dependent, you qualify as an HOH. As an HOH, you can deduct mortgage interest, property taxes, and utilities on your personal residence. You also get to take itemized deductions such as medical expenses, state and local sales taxes, and charitable contributions. However, you cannot take the standard deduction.
Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child (QWDC): Qualifying widows and widowers who meet certain requirements can claim a special income tax credit called the QWDC. To qualify, the surviving spouse must not remarry and must have a dependent child under age 17. The surviving spouse must also pass a test showing that he or she meets certain financial needs.
Single: Single people do not qualify for the HOH or QWDC tax benefits. Instead, they must use the standard deduction instead of itemizing their deductions.
I hope that after reading this blog, you’ll have an easier time knowing what to do when filing your 2022 tax returns!
If you still have any questions, please feel free to join The Budget Mom Facebook Group! You’ll meet plenty of like-minded and see many more tips to help you on your financial journey!