- Days left
I'm generally opposed to this whole idea of sending checks to people courtesy of the IRS. I don't care if you call them "tax rebates" or "economic stimulus." It's a crazy redistribution of money that isn't fair to those who really pay all the taxes.

Half of all American households pay no income tax, but most of those are going to get the checks anyway. How can it really be a rebate if you haven't paid anything in the first place? It can't, but that's not stopping anyone. And many of the households who do pay a large proportion of the income tax won't get one of these checks because they "make too much money" to qualify for one. I know there's nothing I can do about it, but I at least feel better if I publicly complain.

So for those who are lucky enough to be getting a check, you should know that they're going out early! Checks will be mailed starting Monday, a full five days before their planned mailing. And if you had your tax refund direct deposited this time around, you'll get your economic stimulus money even faster because it will be direct deposited to your account.

The government is hoping that you spend your $600 or $1500 or whatever your family is receiving. I'm hoping (not so secretly) that you do something responsible with it like pay down some debt, establish a savings account for emergencies, or otherwise buy something that your family really needs (not just something that they really want).

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.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Intro to different retirement accounts

What does it mean to have a 401(k)? IRA?

View Course »

How much house can I afford

Home buying 101, evaluating one of your most important financial decisions.

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Cities with the Highest Tax Rates

Much ado is made in the press about federal tax brackets, but cities can carry a tax bite of their own. Even if you live in a state that has no income tax, your city may levy a variety of taxes that could eat away the entire benefit of living in an income tax-free state, including property taxes, sales taxes and auto taxes. Consider all the costs before you move to one of these cities, and understand that rates may change based on your family's income level.

Great Ways to Get Charitable Tax Deductions

Generally, when you give money to a charity, you can use the amount of that donation as a deduction on your tax return. However, not all charities qualify as tax-deductible organizations. While there are many types of charities, they must all meet certain criteria to be classified by the IRS as tax-deductible organizations. There are legitimate tax-deductible organizations in many popular categories, such as those listed below.

A Freelancer's Guide to Taxes

Freelancing certainly has its benefits, but it can result in a few complications come tax time. The Internal Revenue Service considers freelancers to be self-employed, so if you earn income as a freelancer you must file your taxes as a business owner. While you can take additional deductions if you are self-employed, you'll also face additional taxes in the form of the self-employment tax. Here are things to consider as a freelancer when filing your taxes.

Tax Deductions for Voluntary Interest Payments on Student Loans

Most taxpayers who pay interest on student loans can take a tax deduction for the expense ? and you can do this regardless of whether you itemize tax deductions on your return. The rules for claiming the deduction are the same whether the interest payments were required or voluntary.

Tax Tips for Uber, Lyft, Sidecar and other Car Sharing Drivers

When you're a driver for a ride-sharing company such as Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, or other car sharing service, the most important thing to understand about your taxes is that you are probably not an employee of Uber, Lyft or Sidecar. Drivers for these companies are usually independent contractors, a fact that has tax implications, both at filing time and year-round.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum