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Tax terrors, scams and tax tips to ease Friday the 13th fears

Taxes and Friday the 13th are perfect partners. I mean, really, there's not much that's scarier than taxes.

Today's Daily Tax Tip looks at six tax terrors and ways to overcome them. You can get the specifics at the tip, but here's a preview of these half dozen common tax fears:

  1. Struggling through the complicated filing process,
  2. Missing a tax deduction or credit,
  3. Making a costly mistake,
  4. Hiring a bad, or worse, crooked, tax pro
  5. Facing an audit, and
  6. Having a tax bill that's too big to pay.

Scary ACA, ID theft: This filing season, we can add a couple more tax terrors.

IStock_000006713208XSmallA lot of filers are terrified about how the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, will affect them and their taxes. This is the first filing season taxpayers, tax preparers and the Internal Revenue Service have had to deal with the real world tax ramifications of the health care reform law.

ACA problems have cropped up, but so far there's been no overwhelming horror movie type screams from the collective tax world. But the filing season is still young.

Then there's the fear that your tax identity might be stolen. That's a terror every tax year, but the possibility has been increasing every year despite efforts to combat the crime.

Beware the tax scam Dirty Dozen: In fact, tax identity theft and schemes to get our personal information to commit that crime remain at the top of this year's Dirty Dozen tax scam list.

This list, compiled each year by the Internal Revenue Service, looks at the lengths criminals go to capitalize on our fear of making tax mistakes or our honesty in wanting to pay the correct amount of tax we owe or our greed in wanting to get our tax refund money (or more!) as quickly as possible.

The 12 most egregious tax scams of 2015 are another of this week's Daily Tax Tips.

Weekly Daily Tax Tips round-up: In fact, most of pieces of tax advice offered this past work week are a bit scary, especially if you have a bit of trepidation, in this week leading up to Valentine's Day, about committing to a personal relationship.

Here are the links to all five of the latest tax tips:

  1. Tax refund options (Monday, Feb. 9, 2015)
  2. Married couples filing status options (Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2015)
  3. Alimony's tax implications (Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015)
  4. Dirty Dozen tax scams (Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015)
  5. 6 tax terrors (Friday, Feb. 13, 2015)

Special tax tip pages: As usual, this week's five tax tips have been added to the February tax tips special blog page.

You can head here if you happen to miss a Monday-through-Friday tax tip, which are posted each week day in the upper right corner of the ol' blog's home page, or the end of week round-up.

If you want more tips to review, January's page is complete. March and April tax tip collections will appear as those months arrive.

As for today, hang in there paraskevidekatriaphobia sufferers. I have faith in your ability to make it safely through today.

But mark your calendars. This is just the first of three Friday the 13th dates this year. The second superstitious end of a week is just a month away. Friday the 13th number three in 2015 falls in November.

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