The IRS' official tax guide: Publication 17
IRS 2016 refunds around same amount, at same pace
Tax refunds in many states, however, are markedly slow in arriving

How kids can help cut your tax bill

The hubby and I have no children. We often, however, seem to find ourselves at places and events chock full of families.

For the most part, that's OK. Although we're child-free, we get a kick out of kids in small doses. They often provide some chuckles. Or as in the case of the poor baby pictured below, literal out loud laughs.

Baby bad taste giphySorry, kiddo, but peas are good for you. Really!

Plus, it always helps to know that when we get in our car and head home, it's just the two of us!

Families still rule: We're in the minority. Most of our friends have at least one child.

To be honest, most of our friends are now grandparents -- I'm still trying to figure out how they aged and we didn't! -- so we hear a lot about the grandkids and see a lot of social media shared snapshots of the youngsters.

We also hear a lot of relief from our peers that they no longer have to worry about the day-to-day responsibilities of being a parent. We especially hear how happy they are to have more disposable cash now that they no longer face the many costs of bringing up kids.

Family-friendly tax laws: I got to thinking about that last week as I looked over the collection of Daily Tax Tips posted March 14-18. Every single one of them dealt, at least in part, with parenthood. They are:

  1. How the Earned Income Tax Credit can help (Monday, March 14, 2016)
  2. Properly defined dependents pay off (Tuesday, March 15, 2016)
  3. IRS tax credit helps with childcare costs (Wednesday, March 16, 2016)
  4. Take advantage of the adoption tax credit (Thursday, March 17, 2016)
  5. Getting tax help to care for an aging parent (Friday, March 18, 2016)

Tips #2, #3 and #4 are obviously tied to tax breaks for rearing minor children.

Tip #1 deals with the Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC. This dollar-for-dollar savings on your tax bill, and possibly even a refund if you don't owe Uncle Sam anything at filing time, is available for lower-income folks, even those who don't have children. But it provides a bigger credit if you don't make much money and have a larger family.

And tip #5 is about the tax breaks available when adult children essentially take on the role of parenting their aging moms and dads.

So even though we've never raised a baby, I am now looking at that last tax tip as I help my 82-year-old mom. She's still living independently and I hope that continues for a long, long time. But if not, at least I know I have some tax-related options in connection with any additional assistance the hubby and I might eventually provide.

Here's hoping that all you parents out there enjoy your children at all ages and stages of their and your lives. And here's hoping that last week's tax tips can help you and your family save a few dollars on your Internal Revenue Service bill.

Now get off the Internet and get out there with the kids and have some fun! And say hi if you see the hubby and me.

In addition to these end-of-week tax tip roundups, you can peruse all of 2016's tax tips on special tips pages for January, February and, so far, March. The tips will continue, highlighted each weekday in the upper right corner of the blog page, through the April 18 filing deadline.



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