READ before April 15 so you don’t miss the latest credits and deductions

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Federal income taxes are due Tuesday, April 15th!  Before you finish your taxes, make sure you check to see if you qualify for all the latest credits and deductions.  You can get tax credit or deductions for everything from college costs to buying your first home, from electric cars to energy-efficient appliances.  You may qualify for some credits or deductions this year even if you have not in the past.

You will find the full list of credits and deductions on the irs.gov website.  The Earned Income Tax Credit and the Education Tax Credit are two of the biggest tax credits people miss.  Many people simply don't know they can qualify so they don't apply.  Tax attorney Lynn Ebel with H&R Block highlighted some of the most important keys on FOX 4's morning news.

EARNED INCOME TAX CREDIT:

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) offers a financial boost for people working hard to make ends meet. Even if you didn't qualify in the past, you may qualify for the first time this year if your marital, parental or financial status has changed.  The IRS urges workers, self-employed people and farmers earning $51,567 or less in 2013 to see if they qualify by using the EITC Assistant on IRS.gov.

To get the credit, you must file a tax return and specifically claim the EITC, even if you aren’t required to file.

The EITC is a refundable tax credit, which means you might get money back, even if you have no tax withheld.

Many special rules apply to the EITC, so you should review the rules carefully.  In most cases, the EITC does not affect welfare benefits or eligibility for Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), supplemental nutrition assistance program (food stamps), low-income housing or most Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) payments. Though unemployment benefits are not earned income, they are taxable income and may affect the amount of EITC.

To find out more, click this link:  http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/EITC-Home-Page--It%E2%80%99s-easier-than-ever-to-find-out-if-you-qualify-for-EITC

 

EDUCATION TAX CREDITS:

Education tax credits can help offset the costs of higher education. About one third of Americans now attending college qualify for one of these, but fail to apply. The American Opportunity (Hope Credit extended) and the Lifetime Learning Credit are education credits you can subtract in full from the federal income tax, not just deduct from taxable income.  You can also save for college tax-free or deduct tuition and fees.  Look at all options to make sure you get the one that best fits your situation.

To find out more, click this link:  http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Education-Credits

 

EXTENDED HOURS:

Need after-hours help?  Whether they’re third-shift workers, “night owls” or self-proclaimed procrastinators, many taxpayers need tax help beyond regular business hours.  H&R Block will keep a number of tax offices open until midnight on April 15th to ensure taxpayers receive the tax advice they need.  Here's a list of those locations:

 

WHERE:

-       3613 Noland Road, Independence, Mo

-       804 7 Highway, Blue Springs, MO

-       4321 Main Street, Kansas City, MO

-       One Block Way, Kansas City, MO

-       1811 East North Avenue, Belton, MO

-       987 NE Rice Road, Lee’s Summit, MO

-      5309 Johnson Drive, Mission, Kansas

-      15254 W. 119th Street, Olathe, Kansas

-      13250 W. 87th Street, Lenexa, Kansas

-      151 South 18th Street, Kansas City, KS

-      7642 State Avenue, Kansas City, KS

-      5941 NE Antioch Road, Gladstone, MO

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