Letter to the Editor: There are benefits to having the IRS do your taxes

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I would like to commend Councilman David Anderson for his obvious concern for his constituents in the city of Dover, as shown in his Letter to the Editor, and I thank him for his service (“Reconsider the IRS portion of Inflation Reduction Act,” June 9).

However, I am a little confused by that concern in the case of paying taxes. Delawareans who cannot afford to hire someone to prepare their taxes can already get free tax preparation through the IRS website (irs.gov). Having used one of the free tax preparation services offered there for the last few years, I can attest to the fact that it definitely lets users know that they have not filed their state taxes and offers to do that for them, as well.

Having the IRS do one’s taxes for free ensures that they are done correctly. The councilman’s contention that there would be a “refund … more likely (to) benefit the IRS” if taxes are done by the IRS, rather than by the taxpayer’s “interpretation of the tax code,” may be true but only if the taxpayer is not filing properly. I have had the IRS correct mistakes on my forms in the past, and on one occasion, they owed me a larger refund! The constituents to whom the councilman refers may find that they have actually been paying more than the law required, rather than less. The truth is that the IRS ensures that all taxpayers follow the tax laws enacted by our elected government representatives. No one can interpret those laws to benefit themselves without risking being found guilty of breaking those laws and suffering clearly defined consequences.

Having one’s taxes prepared for free by the IRS accomplishes three things: Taxes are prepared according to the law, no one is disenfranchised due to income or ability, and fewer employees are required to guarantee accurate tax filing through audit. This does not mean that the other options currently available to taxpayers — doing their own taxes or hiring a professional — will not still be available.

Ruth Ashby

Ocean View

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