A Mom’s Guide To Tackling Taxes This Year

Moms are busy. That goes without saying. Between chauffering kids to activities and likely working a full-time job, finding extra time for anything else is next to impossible.

But yet, it’s also necessary.

Moms tackle taxes

Many moms manage the entire household. That means everything from laundry and cooking to paying bills and overlooking the finances. But when it comes to a family’s money, taxes are sometimes overlooked. Yet, taxes are an important piece of any family’s complete financial picture. Filing a tax return can yield one of their biggest “paychecks” of the year, which comes in the form of a tax refund.

To help your family achieve the best tax outcome possible, here’s what you should know before you file your 2018 tax return.

1. Tax reform eliminated the personal exemption – but it gives back, too.

If you’re used to claiming a personal exemption for yourself, your spouse, and each of your children, you’ll have to adjust this year. The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act removed the value of a personal exemption from the tax code in 2018.  Previously, that deduction reduced your family’s household taxable income by $4,050 per person.

However, the new tax law makes up for the loss of exemptions for most people in other ways. For instance, the Child Tax Credit expanded by going from $1,000 in value to $2,000. The standard deduction approximately doubled for each filing status as well. And for dependents too old to qualify for the Child Tax Credit, you can now claim a new nonrefundable credit of $500.

2. Don’t miss out on the credit for child care expenses.

If you need to pay someone to take care of your children while you work, the Child and Dependent Care Credit may help you defray up to 35 percent of those expenses. To qualify for the credit, however, you need to pay someone older than 19 years of age and who is not the child’s parent to care for the child. You also need to ask for the person or organization’s Social Security number or other taxpayer identification number as you’ll need that when you file your return. You can take the credit as long as your child is under age 13, or physically or mentally unable to care for themselves.

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