Thursday, March 04, 2010

Taxing

I met with a tax person at H&R Block today after the Great Frustration of Monday afternoon which saw me trying to get answers about Schedule C from the IRS. Spending two hours on the phone being transferred from person to person an infinite number of times taught me that there is a department for a portion of every line on every form and no one department can answer any of your questions fully. All was not lost as I did kind of get a kick out of how all the IRS people introduced themselves as "Mrs. So-and-So." I don't know why that struck me as funny - probably because I pictured them all as Lily Tomlin as Ernestine.

After getting nowhere fast, I finally gave up and called the local H&R Block branch office here in town. I was bowled over by the fact that I could go in there and ask questions at no charge, so I made an appointment and told Heidi that this is what we're doing.

I went in to ask questions. I walked out with another appointment that will have them doing 2009's taxes for me. I imagine that this was part of the plan in letting me come in and ask questions for free, but I really don't mind.

For so many years, I've had nothing but a couple W2s, some mortgage interest, a few charitable contributions and the child tax credit. I over-withhold like crazy (a result of one year of under-withholding that saw us paying in a shitload) so we always get a sizable refund. But this year, with Heidi's writing actually making money, I had to fill out Schedule C and I found myself in over my head pretty quickly. I thought that I could do it - I even bought the Turbo Tax Home & Business edition this year and got all the way through the personal tax part, but when I got to the business section, even having the tax software was not enough

So Monday, for the first time since probably 2001, I will have someone doing my taxes. With all that's new and different with our tax situation this year, it's basically about peace of mind knowing that everything will be done correctly. I just want it to be done right. Sure, it's going to cost a bit more (and I kind of flushed the price of TurboTax down the toilet) but I figure that it was worth it to learn that it was more than I could do. And it's not like Heidi's going to stop writing just to make tax filing easier. (And with the way Special Delivery has taken off, I am not about to wish for that!)

In my life, just like the Boston song says, all I want is to have my peace of mind. It's hard to find in so many places, but this is one area that spending a little money to have a professional do the work I would have normally done will buy just that. I'll sleep a little better tonight because of it.

1 comment:

mary35 said...

I did that one year too-- I claimed one when I was filling out my W-2 instead of zero, or something like that. Needless to say I had to pay a bunch to federal and state, when I hardly made any money in the first place. Talk about adding insult to injury. I never made that mistake again, either.