Friday, December 28, 2012

The IRS and Me

It's getting near Tax time again, and here I go with my IRS dance. You see for the past - oh - maybe 7 years, I have owed the IRS some money. Long story, but it happened when I lost my job the same year the company I worked for piled some extra money on my income. They screwed up and it was supposed to go on a previous year (a year I made less money and wouldn't be taxed so high) but their accountant was a putz and didn't know how to handle the mistake.

So I owed the IRS a considerable amount when I had no money. I also didn't know you could call them and make arrangements with them. I thought they just piped out your bank account (like they did) and made you loose everything (like they did). But what I had in my account, wasn't what I owed. So I contacted my state representative (did you know you could do that?) and they connected me with a specialist to help. My taxes have been deferred until my income is enough that I can pay back.

The dancing issue is that the IRS forgets every year. It seems that each year has a different department and they don't work well with each other (talk about efficiency) . So every year I have to write them a letter, reminding them that I have very little income (like they can't just see that) and I can't pay what I owe. Basically, it's not tax, it's self employment tax that my earned income doesn't cover. That's what I owe every year since I've been self employed.

So last year I wrote and they missed my note and sent a letter out mid year. I explained again and they wrote back to tell me they will look into it. Finally at the end of October I got a letter, saying they were very busy, but they are still looking into it. And then I got another letter, and another letter, and another letter, every week until December 26th when they finally came to a conclusion. I was right.

Now I know where a good portion of the fiscal shortage is coming from, not from tax shortages, but government waste. Why did they have to send me 8 letters telling me they haven't made a decision yet?

And now it's tax time again, and I'm guessing I'll have to pay again and the dance will continue. At least next year I should have enough income to start paying down my debt. I hope the IRS and Me will continue to be friends after the dance is over :)

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