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Old 02-22-2012, 03:25 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Payin-the-Toll View Post
GrayHare nailed it! Government has all of our numbers on computer, so why not just send us a bill or mail us a check? Definitely need some type of tax reform--Hope we get it by the time my grandkids are filing so they don't have to go through this crap once a year.
Because the tax code is too complicated. e.g. the government doesn't know how much you donated to charity, if you installed energy efficient windows etc, etc

All the time we lived in the UK we rarely filed a tax return. Each year we'd get a statement from the taxman showing our income and deductions and how much we owed them or they owed us.
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Old 02-22-2012, 04:37 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by samclem View Post
This would be useful to the small number of people still using paper forms but who also are comfortable with using computers and the internet. It won't do anything for the majority of folks who do their own taxes using TurboTax, HR Block At Home, Tax Act, etc. Nobody is going to re-type everything into those IRS forms.
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I'm still filing on paper.

<snip>

I would do the e-filing if the IRS and state gave me a free software package to do it.
So I replied indicating that IRS does provide that option. I thought you were supporting what he said but I guess your main complaint is not lack of free efiling (even though that's what you mentioned), but complicated calculations one has to do without additional software...

I am on board with that... but for those that don't know, I figured I would mention there is a free efiling option...

As for noone using it, well, it seems like at least both Independent and myself would consider using that as well some others mentioning this on other threads... And again, I am all for flat and/or auto-deducted tax - it's a shame population has to spend all this time and resources on filing taxes each year.
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Old 02-22-2012, 07:08 PM   #43
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What special form? I see nothing in the instruction booklet. And 1040-V, a relatively new form (the payment voucher form), is not required either.
"Form 8948 must be filed by a tax return preparer by law to e-file any "covered" return that can be e-filed but chooses to paper file the return instead.
This is for retail preparers who file 11 or more returns."

I work for H&R Block this season and this is directly from their literature.

They are encouraging efile for many reasons.
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Old 02-22-2012, 07:15 PM   #44
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GrayHare nailed it! Government has all of our numbers on computer, so why not just send us a bill or mail us a check?
This is what my friend, who owned his own tax preparation service for many years thought. He sold the business years ago.

Nothing is so complicated that it cannot be simplified. The problem is that the code keeps changing every year.

The reason it keeps changing is that this is the primary tool that the govt has to modify our behaviors. It is not just about the money. They will never let that go. Since political power is constantly changing hands so will the need to change the modification tool (tax code).

Modern people are not smarter than traditional people, they are just different in their ways. There will always be a need for tax preparation help.
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Old 02-22-2012, 11:15 PM   #45
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"Form 8948 must be filed by a tax return preparer by law to e-file any "covered" return that can be e-filed but chooses to paper file the return instead.
This is for retail preparers who file 11 or more returns."

I work for H&R Block this season and this is directly from their literature.

They are encouraging efile for many reasons.
I prepare my own taxes and do not use any paid preparer, so form 8948 is irrelevant to me.
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Old 02-23-2012, 06:57 AM   #46
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can you imagine what the software would be like if the government created it? what a nightmare.
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Old 02-23-2012, 07:05 AM   #47
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can you imagine what the software would be like if the government created it? what a nightmare.
Like your SS benefit (both forecast and actual payments)?
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Old 02-23-2012, 09:26 AM   #48
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can you imagine what the software would be like if the government created it? what a nightmare.
Yep, it would be as helpful and clear as the present IRS publications.
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:40 AM   #49
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If the IRS is collecting data in paperless fashion from all sources, it should be a simple matter for their computer to total my numbers, and send me a bill for whatever I owe. If there are certain non-reported elements, such as deductable expenses, I can file just that data. Now THAT's what I'd call paperless.
Not all sources. Most people would not be happy with this.
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:48 AM   #50
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I don't think you can legally ride a horse to work, shopping, etc. any more - I am sure there would be penalties if you did. Though not legally required, not having a phone wouldn't exempt you from any number of tasks that require a phone, so access is virtually required.

I am all for the IRS or any government agency improving efficiency and reducing costs, now more important than ever with our deficits. Going paperless isn't "needlessly difficult" either IMHO, so we disagree, no problem...

I have seen people ride their horse to the store... where is it illegal
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:49 AM   #51
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Yep, it would be as helpful and clear as the present IRS publications.
Just finalized my taxes this morning, it's ridiculous how complex they are, as you all know. I don't have much trouble with my background, but there is no way the average citizen could do this for themselves - what a racket. I wish I knew a way to get the electorate steamed enough to pressure our "leaders." Not holding my breath of course...

End of pointless rant!
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:51 AM   #52
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It's done that way in the UK, but their rules for individual taxes are a lot simpler. I think I'd rather stick with the present (bad) method than be forced to prove to the IRS that their figures are incomplete/wrong every year.


Actually, when I was in the UK I never saw anything about the taxes... the gvmt told the employer how much to withhold and it was done... bypassing the taxpayer alltogether...
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:56 AM   #53
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JMHO - if the IRS goes paperless there will be alot of people that just won't file, mostly lower income people. Hopefully they'll be smart enough to put alot of Federal deductions on their W-4.I was so iritated with Intuit/TT and now the IRS and Federal Govt's 4 billion page tax code, I had been thinking about going back to the old paper filing next year.
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Most (if not all) lower income people do not even pay taxes... not filing will hurt them because they probably are getting back some refundable credit....
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:57 AM   #54
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No, this return was confirmed by the AARP overseer, the representative in charge. It didn't make any difference to me, in so much as I was going to pay anyway. They just didn't want to print out a paper return for me to send in with a check. That would be paperwork. They wanted an efile and electronic deduction from my checking account. It was actually easier for me to do it this way. It's just funny in how they pushed you to do it their way. You had to pay by 4-15 anyway. I was prepared for this. Some people may not be.
Well, this is not an IRS policy. It might be a suggestion but bottomline the IRS just requires the return to be filed. Likely an AARP site policy because they do not either have the capacity to print additional returns or do not want to pay the cost of printing the additional returns. At my site it is sponsored by the Air Force and we get all of our support from the legal office on base. I guess the AARP site does not do ammended returns or has to deal with Military members who still qualified for first time home buyers credit, two examples of returns that must be mailed in.
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Old 02-23-2012, 03:54 PM   #55
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It is my impression that e-filing is strongly encouraged by both IRS and AARP cost/efficiency. At our location, we also will not do paper returns. I assume that is the AARP (??) policy to "encourage" e-filing. We will do paper for the stuff that cannot be e-filed....I think 1040X is one of those.
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Old 02-23-2012, 04:05 PM   #56
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Actually, when I was in the UK I never saw anything about the taxes... the gvmt told the employer how much to withhold and it was done... bypassing the taxpayer alltogether...
It's the same with banks, the taxes are paid directly, before you receive your interest/dividend. Charitable contributions are tax free but it is the charitable organization who claim back the refund. You donate $100 and they claim another $20 back from the taxman.

My sister recently began renting out a house she owns, and if the rents and/or profits are below a certain level she doesn't have to report it. Large allowances like this make the tax code easy.
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Old 02-23-2012, 04:08 PM   #57
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IRS does provide a free way to efile: www.freefilefillableforms.com

You don't need to print anything out to snail-mail...
Thanks. That appears to be a step up from the IRS fillable forms (which don't do math, and don't support eFiling).
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Old 02-23-2012, 07:43 PM   #58
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jimnjana, in my post I didn't mean to imply nor did I say that the efiling was an IRS requirement. I am saying that the AARP reps were pushing it and were trying to get everyone to get rid of their paper returns. They did print out a copy for my records. There were six volunteers in the room doing returns and while the volunteer was reviewing my return on the computer I overheard other discussions about the paperless system and efiling, so I'm thinking this is really being pushed. It's just that last year I had my return done by the same group and don't remember "paperless" being pushed.
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:09 AM   #59
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jimnjana, in my post I didn't mean to imply nor did I say that the efiling was an IRS requirement. I am saying that the AARP reps were pushing it and were trying to get everyone to get rid of their paper returns. They did print out a copy for my records. There were six volunteers in the room doing returns and while the volunteer was reviewing my return on the computer I overheard other discussions about the paperless system and efiling, so I'm thinking this is really being pushed. It's just that last year I had my return done by the same group and don't remember "paperless" being pushed.
Yes, guess that I read the "stressing going paperless" the wrong way. BTW we process over 1000 returns a year at our site and only a handful request to file paper vs efile. So it is not really an issue for us. I guess the title of the thread just hit the wrong button with me. Definitely not a fan of the IRS dictating how I/we file when they don't offer free filing for everyone.
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