CPA & Business Advisory Blog

Do I Need to File?

It’s tax time! Are you required to file a tax return? Even if you’re not, here are some circumstances where you may want to file to get a refund:

General Filing Rules.  Whether you need to file a tax return depends on a variety of factors. In most cases, the amount of your income and your filing status will determine if you must file a tax return. For example, if you’re single you must file if your income was at least $10,150. Other rules may apply if you’re self-employed, have security sales that will be reported on Schedule D or if you’re a dependent of another person. There are also other cases when you must file. Go to IRS.gov/filing to find out if you need to file.

IRS low resNew for 2014: Premium Tax Credit.  If you bought health insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace in 2014, you may be eligible for the new premium tax credit. The premium tax credit is an advanceable, refundable tax credit designed to help eligible individuals and families afford health insurance purchased through the Marketplace. You will need to file a return to claim the credit. If you purchased coverage from the Marketplace in 2014 and chose to have advance payments of the premium tax credit sent directly to your insurer, you must file a federal tax return. You will reconcile any advance payments with the allowable premium tax credit. You should receive Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, by early February. The new form will have information that will help you file your tax return.

Tax Withheld or Paid.  Did your employer withhold federal income tax from your pay? Did you make estimated tax payments? Did you overpay last year and have it applied to this year’s tax? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you could be due a refund.

Earned Income Tax Credit.  Did you work and earn less than $52,427 last year? You could receive an earned income tax credit as a tax refund. You may be eligible for a refund of up to $6,143. Use the 2014 EITC Assistant tool on IRS.gov to find out if you qualify. If you do, file a tax return to claim it.

Additional Child Tax Credit.  Do you have at least one child that qualifies for the Child Tax Credit? To qualify for the additional child tax credit, the child must be under the age of 17 and meet other dependent and support requirements. Even if you don’t get the full credit amount, you may qualify for the Additional Child Tax Credit.

American Opportunity Credit.  The American Opportunity Credit is available for four years of post secondary education and can be up to $2,500 per eligible student.  You or your dependent must have been a student enrolled at least half time for at least one academic period. Even if you don’t owe any taxes, you still may qualify for the refundable portion of this credit.

If you think one of the above situations might apply to you, call Jenna Staton, EA at 440-449-6800 in our Tax Planning and Preparation Department.

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