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Understand the Recovery Rebate Credit

by Luke Landes

According to the Internal Revenue Service, 15 percent of 2008 income tax returns that have been filed already have errors involving the recovery rebate credit. Here is what the government wants you to know: Some tax returns erroneously claim the credit, do not claim the proper amount of recovery rebate credit or mistakenly enter the amount ... Continue reading this article…

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How Will You File Your Taxes?

by Luke Landes

I’ve started receiving W2s, 1099s, and a variety of other tax-related documentation in the mail and online, which means one thing: It is time to get serious about determining my final tax liability. If I planned right, I will have paid just enough between estimated taxes and withholding to avoid an underpayment penalty, but it’s ... Continue reading this article…

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Filing Your 2008 Taxes With the Economic Stimulus (Recovery Rebate Credit)

by Luke Landes

If you didn’t received a payment from the economic stimulus that was devised by the United States government last year and your situation now qualifies you for the credit, you should claim this amount when filing your 2008 taxes. On the 2008 tax filing forms, there is a line designated to enter this amount, listed ... Continue reading this article…

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Rich People are More Likely to Cheat on Income Tax Returns

by Luke Landes

According to a new study by Joel Slemrod, a professor at the University of Michigan’s business school, and Andrew Johns, an IRS researcher, the more you earn, the more likely you are to cheat on your taxes. The study compiled data from tax returns from 2001, audits, and unpublished data from the Internal Revenue Service. ... Continue reading this article…

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Income Tax Filing Deadline is Today for Those Who Have an Extension

by Luke Landes

This is a reminder in the form of an article I posted a few weeks ago. If you’ve filed for an extension for reporting your 2007 federal income tax, your deadline is today. Here are some important resources to help you file today without a penalty. File your taxes for free. The Free File Alliance ... Continue reading this article…

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Deadline for Income Tax Extension Filing, October 15, is Almost Here

by Luke Landes

If you’ve filed for an extension for reporting last year’s federal income tax, your deadline is quickly arriving. Here are some important resources to help you make that deadline. File your taxes for free. The Free File Alliance allows residents in most states to file for free as long as the taxpayer meets certain qualifications. ... Continue reading this article…

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Comparing McCain and Obama’s Tax Plans

by Smithee

American Presidential elections are a great big spectacle of promises, speeches, mud slinging, rumors, misinformation and debates. A lot of people make their decisions based on soft aspects like a candidate’s personality. I like to look for the hard numbers that you won’t find on the nightly news, and I found a good summary of ... Continue reading this article…

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2007 New Jersey Homestead Rebate: Receive Up to $2,000

by Luke Landes

Homeowners in New Jersey are eligible for a partial rebate of property taxes paid. If you owned and lived in a house in New Jersey on October 1, 2007, you are eligible. Renters like me are eligible for a separate rebate up to $860. If you haven’t received an application, you should shortly. The state ... Continue reading this article…

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Deduct Your Miles at 58.5 Cents Each

by Luke Landes

The Internal Revenue Service is recognizing the increasing costs of transportation and has revised the rate that taxpayers can use for deducting business-related travel expenses. For miles driven between July 1 and December 31, 2008, the new rate is 58.5 cents per mile, up 8 cents from the rate used for the first half of ... Continue reading this article…

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McCain Proposes Summer Gas Tax Holiday (Again)

by Luke Landes

The presidential candidates are fighting hard for your vote, and the economy seems to be one of the top issues. To soothe jitters over an economically turbulent near future, Senator Barack Obama proposed a second economic stimulus payment, similar to the one proposed and passed by President Bush and Nancy Pelosi earlier this year. It’s ... Continue reading this article…

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Obama Proposes Second Economic Stimulus Package

by Luke Landes

Click here to understand how Obama’s new 2009 economic stimulus plan might affect you. Presidential candidate and Senator Barack Obama is calling for a second economic stimulus package to help boost the economy where the first attempt may have failed. This second stimulus plan, supported by the Democrats in Congress, will provide a $50 billion ... Continue reading this article…

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McCain vs. Obama: Your Future Tax Bill

by Luke Landes

The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center released a report yesterday that explains in detail the effect that a McCain presidency and an Obama presidency would have on the tax bill for American households. The data are stratified by income range and reflect a wide difference in stated policy between the two candidates. In addition to making ... Continue reading this article…

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If You Had Filing Fees Deducted From Your Tax Refund, You Will Receive a Paper Check Rebate

by Luke Landes

This has been noted on Consumerism Commentary many times in the last month. If you filed your taxes using third party software like TurboTax or H&R Block, were owed a tax refund, had your filing fees or tax preparation fees deducted from your refund, and qualified for an economic stimulus payment, then you will not ... Continue reading this article…

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1,500 Economic Stimulus Payments Sent To Wrong Accounts

by Luke Landes

The 2008 economic stimulus package is a story that won’t die. Many people have been concerned that they haven’t received their stimulus payment via direct deposit by the date originally scheduled based on the last two digits of their Social Security number. The Associated Press is now reporting that 1,500 stimulus payments have been sent ... Continue reading this article…

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Didn’t Receive Your Economic Stimulus Payment Yet?

by Luke Landes

Welcome to Consumerism Commentary. If you are new here, consider subscribing to our RSS feed (more info here). Consumerism Commentary always has the latest information about the economic stimulus payment. Several disappointed people contacted me today. They expected to receive their economic stimulus payment deposited into their bank account today but they have not seen ... Continue reading this article…

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What to Do With Your Economic Stimulus Payment (Or Any Found Money)

by Luke Landes

This week, the Internal Revenue Service of the United States will begin sending direct deposits to those who qualify for the economic stimulus tax payment and checks soon after. Everyone who is interested in the tax ramifications of this payment should now know that the money received as a result will not be counted as ... Continue reading this article…

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Question for Tax Day: How Would YOU Reform the Tax Code?

by Luke Landes

If you were given the responsibility of changing laws, and the government and people of the United States had no choice but to uphold your laws (other than being thrown in jail), how would you reform the tax code? Do you think that either the “flat tax” or the “fair tax” would be appropriate for ... Continue reading this article…

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Taxes Complete and SEP IRA Funded: Next Time With a Professional

by Luke Landes

I spent a few hours yesterday completing my tax return. Although I had wanted to work with a tax professional, my procrastination interfered with the plan. It wasn’t as complicated as I expected, but there may have been some deductions I missed. I owe a few thousand dollars, which was less than I originally anticipated ... Continue reading this article…

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My First Economic Stimulus Payment Notice Has Arrived

by Luke Landes

Over the weekend, I received a notification from the IRS about the economic stimulus. The notice isn’t personalized; it contains only general information about the new law. The text of the letter is straightforward. Rather than get into the details, particularly the facts that the law authorizes a new credit to 2008 income taxes and ... Continue reading this article…

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Economic Stimulus Rebate Schedule: When You’ll Receive Your Rebate

by Luke Landes

The IRS has posted a schedule indicating when tax payers, if eligible, will receive their tax payments. Keep in mind that these are estimates and the IRS could very well not meet this schedule. The schedule is based on the final two digits of your Social Security number. If you file jointly, use the last ... Continue reading this article…

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