Adam Magee

Jan 29 2018

2018 Tax Season Tips


Monday, January 29th marks the beginning of the electronic tax return filing season which will continue until April 17th. This means taxpayers will have an additional two days to file taxes beyond the typical April 15th deadline.

Over 155 million individual tax returns are expected to be filed in 2018. The IRS expects 4 out of 5 tax returns will be prepared electronically using tax software and anticipates issuing more than 90% of refunds in fewer than 21 days. To receive your refund in the fastest and safest way, the IRS recommends choosing e-file and direct deposit for refunds.

Here are a few tax preparation tips:

  • To help prevent identity theft the IRS recommends filing early in the tax season.
  • Visit the IRS website ( The IRS website is full of valuable information.
  • Gather all important tax documents using documents collected last year as a guide. All taxpayers must save their tax documents for at least three years. A few important documents include:
    • W-2s
    • 1099s (miscellaneous income, interest, dividends, certain government payments, distributions from pensions, annuities, retirements, etc.)
    • Form 1098 – Mortgage Interest
    • Vehicle registration fees paid in 2017 and state sales tax paid on cars purchased in 2017
    • Receipts and other proof of charitable contributions made in 2017
  • Review your return for errors. Check spelling on names, social security numbers, math, and inputs on line items.
  • Sign and date your return (along with your spouse).
  • Consult your tax professional for help.

All taxpayers should continue to watch out for identity theft scams by people pretending to be IRS representatives through email or phone communications.

Remember, the IRS will never:

  • Demand immediate payment without first having mailed the taxpayer an explanation of additional tax due.
  • Demand that the taxpayer pay taxes without giving them the opportunity to question or appeal the amount said to be owed.
  • Require a specific payment method to be used to pay tax owed.
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers.
  • Threaten to bring in local police or other law enforcement groups to have the taxpayer arrested for not paying.

Finally, don’t forget about filing your Iowa individual income tax return, which is due April 30th, 2018! Iowans can again expect longer wait times for refunds as the Iowa Department of Revenue Director said the agency would double down on fraud prevention efforts that significantly delay the processing of income tax refunds.

This information is provided for informational purposes and is not intended to substitute professional advice.
Adam Magee

About Adam Magee

Adam Magee is a Financial Reporting Associate at Hills Bank’s Operation Center in Hills, IA. Adam has been with the bank since 2016 assisting with SEC filings, income taxes, impaired loan reporting, Federal Home Loan Bank collateral reporting, and accounting research. Adam is from Columbia, Missouri and enjoys flying hot air balloons in his free time. Adam can be reached at

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6 Responses to 2018 Tax Season Tips

  1. Thanks for explaining some tax tips. I’m glad you mentioned that it could be good to gather all the tax documents you will need as a guide. It sounds like it could be good to have this all in one convenient location, especially if it could help you save time in the filing process.

  2. I like how you said that the IRS recommends filing early in the tax season to help prevent identity theft. I filed my taxes early this year to get my refund back early. I appreciate the tips for this years’ tax season.

  3. John says:

    I didn’t know filing early helped prevent identity theft. I guess that’s because the IRS gets a hold of your records earlier. I like to file as early as possible to get my refund.

    • Adam Magee Adam Magee says:

      I’m glad you found some useful information in the article, John. Thanks for reading Hills Helps!

  4. Hector Uba says:

    It’s great that you elaborated on preparing for tax time, it always comes up so much faster than you think. I had no idea that filing your return early could help prevent identity theft, I’m sure it’s easier for the IRS to handle. My wife and I are wanting to get ahead of taxes this year and we want to file early, I will be sure to share these tip with her.

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