2011 and 2012 tax rates, tax brackets
Tax filing preparation checklist

Last week at my other tax blog: Free File and the economy; Capital gains tax rate

Two popular topics each filing season are how to get our taxes to the IRS and the tax rates that produce our tax bills.

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Both of those topics were the focus of posts last week at my other tax blog.

The IRS' Free File program began accepting tax customers on Jan. 17, and this year more people might find themselves eligible because the income threshold is lower. For this filing season, you can use Free File if you made $57,000 or less. Last year, the income cutoff was $58,000.

The IRS probably didn't intend it, but this lower income threshold makes Free File a good barometer of the economy.

Now about those tax rates. Thanks to the battle for the Republican presidential nomination, the capital gains tax rate has been under closer scrutiny. And that raises the question is the capital gains rate right?

You can check out my new posts each Tuesday and Thursday at Bankrate Taxes Blog. And if you happen to miss them there, you can find a wrap-up here each Saturday.

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