Doing taxes can be intimidating for anyone, but as a single parent it seems that they become much more complicated and the task much more daunting. Most divorced couples switch off every other year claiming the kids. This can get rather complicated if you’re unfamiliar with filing your taxes. They ask all kinds of questions about who the child lives with and who provides more than half of the child’s expenses. Entering in this information can be tedious, especially if you aren’t the one that gets to claim the kids that year. Just because they live with you and you provide more than half of their expenses doesn’t mean that you automatically get to claim them, but you do have to enter that information in. Some tax aides make this process easier than others.
As I sat down with my father to figure out taxes this year I was a little worried. I didn’t know the first thing about filing my taxes because this was the first year I didn’t get to claim Logan. We had to enter things into two different programs before we finally got it right. I spent the night gathering daycare receipts and school receipts and looking up all kinds of information before the night was through.
I was lucky enough to get a small refund, but I can only imagine the trouble I would be in if I hadn’t. As a single mom having to pay taxes is hard. You already struggle enough to put food on the table and if it turns out that you owe money it can be a strain on your already tight budget.
Taxes can be overwhelming. I was blessed with a father who was willing to help me for free, but I know there are many other single mothers who aren’t so fortunate. Take the time to make sure you’ve done your taxes correctly. The last thing you need is the IRS coming after you for something you may have overlooked on the form. If you need help ask around and see if anyone would be willing to look them over for you. There’s always someone willing to lend a helping hand.