Fun Facts for Taxes

Fun Facts for Taxes

Well, not really, but a catchy title, right? I read recently that we taxpayers may not be all that savvy about the trillions of dollars we hand over every year. So I read a bit more.

It seems tax collections started in Egypt during the time of the pharaohs, and were applied for various purposes in Greece and Italy and Great Britain. In more modern times, England imposed an income tax to help deal with Napoleon. Our first income tax was started to fund the Civil War in 1861 (though we did have earlier taxes, e.g., remember the Whiskey Rebellion?). Taxes have morphed, gone up and down, and actually make interesting historical reading:

Anyway. There are a couple of things we really should know about our taxes.

* If you get a refund, you have given the government an interest-free loan.

* If you are in arrears on paying taxes, it will not affect your credit score. The three credit bureaus

decided there was too much chance for inaccurate information. Very comforting, right?

* If you delay doing your taxes until October, you still have to pay by April 15 an estimate of what

you will owe.

* Keep your returns and backup paperwork at least 3 years, more if you fear an audit, might have un

der-reported income, or went years without filing.

* And of course there are scams. If you have had identity theft, the thieves can file a tax return in

your name and claim a refund. This can go on for years if you aren’t required to file yourself. If

something changes and you file, you will get a note from the IRS that you have already filed! Then

the work begins to clear up the mess.

Holding my SS number close,

Jean O’Neil, TRIAD committee member