IRS News Release  
March 29, 1989

Steps to Make Taxes Less Taxing

As the Internal Revenue Service shifts into high gear for the last three weeks of the income tax filing season, taxpayers can still take steps to help make their taxes less taxing.

First, file now. The IRS expects almost 32 million individual income tax returns to come into the service centers during the final two weeks of the filing season. This represents almost 30 percent of the 109 million returns expected to be filed this year, about the same percentage as in past years.

While the IRS is in good shape to handle this volume of returns, taxpayers who file now, while the volume is lower, will get their refunds sooner. Refunds are still going out within six weeks, but those who file closer to the deadline will probably have to wait longer for their refund.

As of March 24 the IRS has received over 53 million individual income tax returns, up about one percent from last year, and has processed almost 42.5 million returns, up over three percent. Over 31 million refunds have been certified, up almost two percent from last year, and the average refund is $816, compared to $817 last year at this point.

Second, call the Tele-Tax toll-free telephone system for information on tax topics and automated refund information during non-peak hours. The recorded tapes on over 140 tax topics are available on pushbutton telephones 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and automated refund information is available on weekdays until 11:30 p.m. in most areas, but you will generally get the best service if you call after 6:00 p.m. Local phone numbers for Tele-Tax and instructions for using the automated refund system are in the tax forms package. For areas without a local number, call toll-free 1-800-554-4477.

Third, check your return for accuracy. The IRS says that the most common mistakes continue to include math errors in figuring refunds and taxable income, failing to check the box on Form 1040EZ to indicate dependency status, and failing to enter the standard deduction on Form 1040A. Make sure all the mathematical calculations are correct, attach all the required schedules and forms, sign the return and use the mailing label and envelope that came in the tax package.

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