Tax Return Review

Second Opinion – Review Your Prior Year Tax Return

How Do You Know If Your Tax Return Is Correct?

Whether you filed taxes by yourself or want to double-check your accountant’s work, it can’t hurt to get a second opinion. 

We’ll review your previously filed income tax return(s).

The IRS won’t catch every mistake on your tax return and some errors may be costly. Our tax return review will make sure your return is error-free and you receive the maximum refund you’re owed.

If we find any mistakes, we’ll be available to help you file an amended tax return and answer any questions.

We’ll Give Your Tax Return a Second Look

Making a mistake on your tax return doesn’t mean you’re a tax fraud — but filing an incorrect tax return could be costly. Getting a second opinion could help you clean up any errors and make sure you file correctly and claim all deductions and credits available.

Here’s how it works:

  1. We review your already-filed tax returns.
  2. We’ll let you know if we spot errors or recommend changes.
  3. You decide whether to amend your tax return.

Getting a free tax return review doesn’t obligate you to work with us to correct any tax return(s), but we’d love to help! Either way, we welcome any questions you have about your previously filed tax returns during our review.

Are tax returns on your mind?

Tax Return Review – 4 Common Mistakes

Below are some common errors we regularly discover during our tax return reviews. 

Incorrect Filing Status

Filing status determines your tax bracket and eligibility to claim certain tax credits. RULE: A taxpayer’s marital status on December 31st is treated as the marital status for the entire year. Additionally, a married taxpayer may only file “Married filing Jointly” or “Married Filing Separately” any other filing status would be wrong.  Married taxpayers will usually choose the filing status resulting in the smallest tax bill or maximum refund.  However, there are reasons that would justify filing separately, read is it better to file jointly or separately for information.

Falsely claiming “Head of Household” status to pay less tax or receive tax credits is fraud.  The Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (2017) created a due diligence requirement on tax return preparers who determine taxpayer eligibility for Head of Household status. A tax return preparer who wrongfully determines Head of Household status is subject to a $520 penalty (currently) per instance.

Unclaimed Tax Credits

Sometimes, tax returns are filed without claiming all eligible tax credits.  If you’re paying for tuition, you could be eligible for tax credits. We’ll review your tax return to determine whether you can claim either the American Opportunity Credit or the Lifetime Learning Credit.  If you have children we will check for the Child Tax Credit and Credits for Other Dependents.

Missed Tax Deductions

You can easily miss tax deductions that would reduce your taxable income, and we can help you find them. To Illustrate, alimony is no longer deductible under the new tax law, but divorce agreements executed prior to January 1, 2019, are grandfathered in under the old tax law allowing a deduction for alimony paid that could reduce your taxable income. 

We recently detected a $55,000 alimony deduction that was missed on the original tax return.  

Forgetting Carryforwards 

It is necessary for tax return preparers to review prior year tax returns for carryover information.  The most common information carried over from one tax year to the next are capital losses and passive activity losses.  Unfortunately, some tax preparers neglect to review the previous tax return and completely miss important carryover information.

What If You Realize You Made a Mistake on Your Tax Return?

Don’t worry! If we find a mistake during the tax return review, it can usually be fixed by filing an amended return

You can file an amended return to: 

  • Change your filing status
  • Update your income
  • Add deductions or credits

To make corrections to your tax return, you have to file IRS Form 1040-X within three years of the date the original tax return was filed. 

Alizio Law, PLLC can help you complete this form and make sure everything is correct so you can get your maximum refund the second time around. We’ll also check to see whether the changes to your federal return will affect your New York State taxes from the same year.

If you have any questions about our second opinion tax return review, email us today.