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have you filed taxes on your own? can you recommend a CPA?
Thread poster: Susana Galilea
Susana Galilea  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
Jan 12, 2006

Hi all,

I realize this posting concerns a narrow geographic area, but I would be grateful for any tips or referrals that would direct me to a freelance-friendly CPA in the Chicago area. I moved here a couple of years ago from NYC, but have continued to file my taxes with the assistance of my CPA in New York. While I am very fond of his services, I would much prefer to deal with a local CPA I can visit in person if needed. Any assistance will be greatly appreciated, feel free to contact me directly at sgalilea@ispwest.com

All best,

Susana

[Edited at 2006-01-13 17:32]


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 23:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
I know it seems daunting Jan 12, 2006

But anyone smart enough to translate is plenty smart enough do do their own taxes. Yes, it is a complicated system, but the IRS offers publications on everything, and we are all experts in reading and understanding.

CPAs also make mistakes, cost money and do not save you any time, in fact they waste your time.

Yes, you can make mistakes also, and if the IRS finds one they will let you know. Just ask how much, pay (if you owe anything) and move on.

Once you have done it successfully the first year it's easy from then on. After all, you don't have to know everything, just what pertains to your own situation.

And most important, you will understand it.


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Susana Galilea  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
daunting indeed Jan 13, 2006

Henry Hinds wrote:
I know it seems daunting


So much so I hadn't even considered it. So...any tips on how to get started with the self-education? I live a short walk from my neighborhood's library, for whatever that's worth

Susana


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 23:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not far Jan 13, 2006

It's right there as close as your computer.

The IRS will send you your tax forms along with a publication with basic instructions which may be sufficient. (You've seen this before, I would assume).

For specific instructions of any kind you can get all you need on-line, www.irs.gov/. You can also print out any forms you need if they are not already in your packet.

Just check it out. It's really not that hard and not so scary. All they want is the money, and if you make a mistake it is very unlikely that you will go to jail.

IRS instructions appear to be very carefully done and tested, so if you read and follow the instructions you'll be fine.

Just remember, all they want is the money, so as long as you are paying what you owe, you're OK.


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Lindsay Sabadosa  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:12
Member (2004)
Italian to English
+ ...
Turbo Tax Professional Jan 14, 2006

While you are indeed start enough to file your own taxes, if you want an easy and inexpensive method, consider getting Turbo Tax. It think it's $20 for the standard edition and $50 for the professional (for Schedules B, C and D it's supposedly better). It basically walks you through everything and calculates everything for you. You just enter the data. It can't get much easier and it saves you the paperwork. Otherwise, www.irs.gov and if you've been paying estimated taxes right along, the IRS probably sent you the last booklet with all the forms and publications in it anyway (I got mine right after Christmas - nice present, huh?). Good luck to you! It's really, really not as bad as it seems.
Best,
LSabadosa


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TNT TRANSLATION  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:12
English to Korean
IRS does not call us freelancers! Jan 15, 2006

Susana Galilea,

When you read IRS publications or tax documents, it helps to know that a freelancer is ,for tax purpose, a "self-employed individual", "independent contractor", or "sole-proprietor". Also term "small business" applies to most of freelancers.

As other members mentioned, many tax programs can handle freelancer's income tax return as long as it can file 1040 and schedule c. You may find a free tax program on the IRS website (available on 1/18/06) depedning on your income level.

Good luck with your tax return.

Taehoon

[Edited at 2006-01-16 07:12]


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