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Last Minute Tax Filing: Tips for Success & Maximizing Refunds

Filing Your Taxes on the Last Day

The deadline to file your taxes is approaching quickly and you have yet to begin. While it may not be the ideal scenario, the good news is that you still have time to file before the deadline.

In this section, we’ll discuss how to file electronically, double-check your work, and gather all your necessary documents to ensure a smooth process.

Electronic Filing

One of the easiest ways to file your taxes is electronically. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers a program called IRS Free File, which is an online software application provided by the IRS to help you prepare and file your tax return for free.

There is also commercial tax software available, such as TurboTax and H&R Block, that you can use to file electronically. These programs guide you through the tax preparation process and ask you questions to ensure that you don’t miss any important information.

When you file electronically, be sure to keep a copy of your tax return for your records. This will come in handy if you need to reference it later on.

Double-Checking Your Work

Mistakes happen, but when it comes to your taxes, mistakes can cost you. Double-check your work to ensure that everything is correct and all the information is accurate.

This includes making sure that your name, social security number, and address are all correct as well as entering your income, deductions, and credits accurately. If you do make a mistake, don’t worry.

You can file an amended return to correct any errors. However, keep in mind that if you file your return late or with incorrect information, you may face a penalty.

Gathering All Your Documents

Before you file your taxes, make sure that you have all the necessary documents. This includes your 2021 income forms, such as your W-2 and 1099s, as well as any IRS correspondence you received throughout the year.

Additionally, make sure you have any records of deductible expenses, such as charitable contributions and medical expenses.

Claiming Tax Credits

Tax credits can be a great way to reduce your tax bill and potentially increase your refund. In this section, we’ll discuss the child tax credit and the stimulus payments and recovery rebate credit.

Child Tax Credit

If you have children who are under 18, you may be eligible for the child tax credit. The credit is worth up to $3,000 per child between the ages of 6 and 17.

For children under the age of 6, the credit is worth up to $3,600 per child. In addition, you may be eligible for advance child tax credit payments, which are monthly payments that began in July 2021.

To claim the child tax credit, you’ll need to file a separate form called Schedule 8812 with your tax return. Keep in mind that the child tax credit is only available to taxpayers who meet certain income requirements.

Stimulus Payments and Recovery Rebate Credit

If you received a third stimulus payment earlier in the year, you’ll need to report it on your tax return. You should have received an IRS Letter 6475 with the amount of your payment.

The third stimulus payment is not taxable income, but it may affect other aspects of your tax return. If you did not receive a third stimulus payment, or if you received less than you were eligible for, you may be eligible for the recovery rebate credit.

The credit is designed to provide eligible taxpayers with additional stimulus money. To claim the credit, you’ll need to file a separate form called Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR.


In conclusion, filing your taxes on the last day can be stressful, but with some preparation, it doesn’t have to be. By filing electronically, double-checking your work, and gathering all your necessary documents, you can ensure a smooth process.

Additionally, by understanding the child tax credit and the stimulus payments and recovery rebate credit, you can potentially increase your refund. Remember, if you have any questions or need assistance, seek help from a qualified tax professional.

In conclusion, filing taxes on the last day may be nerve-wracking, but it’s still possible to get everything done on time without rushing. Electronic filing, double-checking your work, and gathering all necessary documents can result in a smooth process.

Claiming tax credits is also an effective way to reduce one’s tax bill. With the help of the child tax credit and stimulus payments, qualified taxpayers can potentially increase their refunds.

While there is still time before the deadline arrives, it’s best to get everything done earlier to avoid any last-minute mishaps and penalties. Remember, should one require assistance, reaching out to a certified tax professional is always an option.

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