Tax filing tips for procrastinators

April 11, 2014 (CHICAGO)

There are just a few days left until your taxes are due and with just a limited amount of time, ABC7 Eyewitness News has some tips to help you avoid those last minute mistakes which can delay your tax refund.

One of the top mistakes: People forget to sign their tax returns and if there is no signature your return is not valid.

Double check your social security number and make sure you are not putting in your spouse's or child's number.

Check your name. The Internal Revenue Service says some people will enter the wrong name, especially if a person has changed it recently. The name has to match the one in the IRS system.

Make sure you check the right filing status. For divorced parents this can be confusing. There's a tool on the IRS website called "What's my filing status?"

Another mistake: Entering credits or deductions that you don't qualify for or missing deductions that you do qualify for.

A lot of people may be filing their taxes this weekend, but if they call the IRS help line, they may hear: "We estimate your wait time to be between 30 and 60 minutes."

Last year, 40 percent of the calls from people trying to reach an agent went unanswered. The average wait for those who got through was 18 minutes.

According to the IRS commissioner, his agency has cut 10,000 employees in the past four years and had $1 billion slashed from its budget.

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