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When you've got self-employment income, it's much nicer if you can use Schedule C-EZ instead of Schedule C. Why? Because it's easy (EZ)!!!

You can use Schedule C-EZ if you have $5,000 or less in business expenses, and if you do not have a net loss in the business for the year. There is an instruction page that comes with the form to help you determine whether you can actually use it and how to fill it out.

Schedule C is much longer, but is required for those with higher expenses or a net loss for the year. There are many more lines to be filled out on the Schedule C, but with the instruction booklet, it's not the worst. For additional information on filing taxes for your small business, refer to IRS Publication 334, Tax Guide for Small Business.

Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.

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