Tax Awareness Day, Spring Edition

It’s the Ides of April! Have you paid your taxes?

I don’t mean filed your taxes for 2015, although you might have done that, too. Maybe you’re expecting a refund; maybe you already got one; maybe you have to pay.

But even though April 15th falls on a Friday this year, which gives you a three-day reprieve on filing your annual taxes, today still represents Tax Day — and the day first-quarter estimated tax payments are due for this tax year.

If you don’t make your own tax payments — for instance, if you have taxes withheld from your paycheck or someone else takes care of your taxes for you — you might not have a good grasp on just how much you’ve paid in 2016. Those of us who pay quarterly estimated tax ourselves know all too well, whether we paid the first of four set payments based on our expected earnings or we paid according to what we actually made so far (projected out through the end of the year).

Tax Day

(Image: “Tax Day,” by Simon Cunningham, on Flickr under Creative Commons.)

 

If you haven’t had the pleasure this year of writing a check — either electronic or paper — to the government for your 2016 taxes, then today is a good day to take a look at the last pay statement you received in March. Check out the “year to date” figures of how much you made and how much was taken out. Depending on whether you think it was too much or too little or just enough, you can either think about all the good things the government is doing with your money … or the things you could’ve done, if you could’ve kept a little more of it.

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