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Last minute tax filing tips, Laura Scheler from United Way Worldwide

Laura Scheler's last minute tax tips
Laura Scheler's last minute tax tips
Laura Scheler

April 15 is a date that is well etched into taxpayers' minds. Some filers wait till the last minute to prepare and file their returns. For those still procrastinating the paperwork and forms, tax specialist Laura Scheler from United Way Worldwide is sharing some last minute tips.

What should I do with the deadline approaching?

If at all possible, file your tax return by the deadline. Failure to file timely can result in penalties. If you can't possibly file the return, request an extension. While the extension does require payment, it is a better alternative to non-filing. Payment plans can be available for those taxpayers who owe.

How do you know if you have claimed the correct credits?

The IRS website has a complete list of credits and deductions. The website is the best source for finding these credits and eligibility requirements. The Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit are two credits that provide benefits to working families with children. These two credits should be a priority for filers.

Who is eligible to receive free tax services and where can they be found?

My Free Taxes is a joint effort to provide qualifying families with tax resources. Families with $58,000 or less of income should log on to for more information.

What materials should you have ready when filing your taxes?

Compile all income documents, like W-2 or 1099s that show your income for the year. For deductions, childcare expense records or medical payments can help substantiate any deductions. Also, personal bank account information for any refund or payment required.

What is the earned income tax credit?

The Earned Income Tax Credit is a tax benefit for working families. This credit helps many lower income families. The threshold for this credit is $52,000.

What are the benefits to filing online?

There are two benefits. First, online filing offers speed. Many tax filers can receive an online processed refund into their bank account in 7-10 days. Second, online filing ensures the accuracy of the return. Tax programs, like those offered through provide calculations and accuracy checks that can help ensure accurate filings.

For more information on tax preparations, please visit

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