The Internal Revenue Service has started processing returns and they have partners nationwide, which assisted them in launching the Earned Income Tax Credit Awareness Day outreach campaign. This campaign makes sure that low income and moderate income tax payers get the credit they deserve.
Local officials and organizations in communities across the nations have been holding news conferences and outreach events that display the benefits of this work incentive for families who earned $51,567 or less in 2013.
It is estimated that four out of five families already get the credit yet millions miss it because they do not claim it or they do not file their tax returns at all.
IRS Commissioner John Koskinen states, “A third of the population qualifies for EITC each year as their personal circumstances change and we want first time qualifiers to have all of the information that they need to claim this credit”.
The EITC does vary based on filing status, income, and family size. Workers, farmers, and the self-employed who earned $51,567 or less in 2013 may receive larger refunds if they qualify for the EITC.
This means people who do not have children could get up to $487 and a maximum credit of $6,044 for those who have three or more qualifying children. The best part is the EITC is refundable unlike many other deductions and tax credits. Therefore, if you do not owe the IRS you may be able to still get a refund.
How to claim the EITC
To claim the EITC you have to file a tax return even if you are not required to, and claim the credit specifically. If you file with TurboTax Online everything will be handled for you.
The IRS wants to remind all taxpayers that even though you should expect your refund to be issued within 21 days, many factors can delay the process. Some returns may require additional reviewing, which will delay the processing time. However, you can check the status of your refund by looking on the Where’s My Refund tool.
Taxpayers are the ones who are responsible for the accuracy of their return regardless if they have someone else prepare it. The EITC rules are complex so the IRS suggests that taxpayers get help if they are uncertain about their eligibility. Common EITC errors include,
- Claiming a child who is not a qualified child of the tax payer
- Filing as single or head of household when married
- Over/under reporting income/expenses to qualify for the maximum amount of the EITC
- Missing social security number (s) and last names do not match for taxpayers and children
Beware of scams
The EITC enables millions of Americans to get a financial boost for their hard work. However, if a deliberate error is made it affects your future eligibility for claiming the EITC. So, make sure you stay far away from swindles that claim they can increase your EITC refund. Instead, they will inflate your income levels and create fake qualifying children and you will be stuck with the penalty.
Also, keep in mind that if you file with Turbo Tax you are guaranteed to not only get your largest refund ever but they will make sure that your return is filled out correctly and is accurate to avoid having your refund delayed.