7 Most Common Tax Mistakes

Sep 24, 2014

oopsHave you been waiting a long time for your refund only to find out it is delayed by a mistake listed below? You are not alone. Below is a list of the 7 most common mistakes on tax returns.

  1. Your return was sent in unsigned – If you file your return electronically, you won’t have to worry about this mistake as the return requests an electronic signature prior to submitting. However, if you mail your return and forget to sign it, the IRS will deem the return as not valid and will send you a notice to correct the mistake.
  2. Your return has an incorrect social security number – If you submit a tax return with an incorrect social security number for anyone listed on your return the IRS will kick this back to you to correct the error.
  3. Your return shows an incorrect name – This may seem silly but is actually a common error. This frequently happens after a person has changed their name after a marriage or other reasons. The name filed on the return does not match what the IRS shows in their system and in turn the tax return will be rejected.
  4. The return shows the wrong filing status – The filing status of Married or Single are usually pretty simple to figure out. The confusion sometimes lies in whether a person should file single or head of household. This happens frequently with divorced parents who have minor children.
  5. Your return claims incorrect credits or deductions – The tax code is becoming more complex each year. It is easy to mistakenly claim a deduction or a credit on a return that a taxpayer may not qualify for or to miss out on claiming something that they may be eligible for. The IRS has found that the credits/deductions that are most often incorrect are: the Earned Income Tax Credit, the Child and Dependent Care Credit, and the standard deduction. If you are filing on your own without the help of a tax advisor it is important to read the instructions carefully to determine what credits and deductions you may or may not be eligible to claim.
  6. Your return shows an incorrect bank account number – Many taxpayers request their refunds to be directly deposited into their bank accounts. However, if the bank account number entered on the return is incorrect the IRS will not be able to transfer for your refund and your return will be sent back to correct the issue.
  7. Your return has math errors – This mistake can happen if you are filing your tax return with paper and pen. The IRS has found that people filing in this manner are 20 times more likely to make those mistakes over those that electronically file. If you are using paper and pen it is very important to double-check your work before submitting your return. In addition, filing by paper takes the IRS considerable more time to process your return and identify the mistakes before the return is sent back to you. If your return is electronically filed, any math errors will be rejected and returned back to you immediately allowing you to resubmit your return with the correction.

For any additional information regarding these mistakes please contact our office.

By: Kristin Metzger, CPA

Categories: Uncategorized