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What if you never file your tax return? Commentary: Answer the IRS’s calls, save money

Source: - May 22, 2013

By Eva Rosenberg, MarketWatch
The Internal Revenue Service hasn't been under such intense public scrutiny since the hearings in the 1990s that led to the Tax Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998 (also known as the Taxpayer Bill of Rights 3). Last time, the targets were the audit and collections divisions. This time, the focus is on the IRS’s division on tax-exempt organizations.

But even amid the inquiries, the IRS has to go on collecting taxes. The nation’s coffers must be filled. So what happens when people don’t file tax returns — but should?

Before we start, let’s just consider the folks who don’t have to file at all. People whose source of income is primarily Social Security and interest and dividends below a certain threshold aren't required to file a tax return. In fact, to reduce the volume of tax returns, the IRS discourages them from filing altogether. So they don’t. Then they get nasty notices. Although they knew their income or profits from stock sales weren't high enough to be taxed — the IRS doesn’t know it until they file.


Category: General Business