You may notice some changes when filing 2018 taxes

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Most of us don’t give much thought to doing our taxes until at least the first of the year. Now that that date has come and gone, one area accountant says the earlier you get started, the better.

When you fill out your 2018 taxes, you will see significant changes. That’s according to Joplin C.P.A. Patrick Kelly, who’s been preparing them for over 30 years. The goal of Congress may have been to try and simplify the tax code, but he says, for many tax filers, that’s not the way it turned out.

“This first page which is pages one and two, the bottom part of it is much more complicated than it ever has been, you can’t even add straight down the column and find all the numbers, sometimes you have to refer to a separate piece of paper just to go from one line to the next,” says Patrick Kelly.

Kelly says the simplest of W-2’s can be done on the first page of the federal return, but he says many taxpayers won’t be that fortunate.

“The most complicated would be six additional schedules, a total of seven different pages and that would be the most complicated,” says Kelly.

And if you’re used to itemizing, he says that’s changing as a result of doubling of the standard deduction. And there is a new tax term to get familiar with, it’s called the pass through deduction where taxable income from a business is passed along to the individual or individuals who own it.

“So let’s say somebody makes $30 thousand dollars net income on their business, they’ll reduce that by $6000 and only pay taxes on $24 thousand and that’s any pass through business and there’s a lot of them originally not thought to be pass throughs, even rental property,” says Kelly.

If this all sounds complicated, Kelly says much of it is, and he suggests people try and do their returns, or have them done as soon as possible to avoid any last minute problems.

If you want to cut down on the possibility of identity theft, Kelly says get your taxes done early. If the I.R.S. has already received your returns and processed them, they’ll quickly pick up on someone else trying to use your identity.

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