💲 The 2023 tax filing season began on Jan. 29

💲 The IRS has announced some key changes for this year's tax filing season

💲 Some changes could mean more money in your pocket

The 2023 tax filing season officially got underway on Jan. 29. Nationally, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is expecting to get more than 158 million individual tax returns.

In New Jersey, 4.6 million tax returns are expected to be filed, said IRS Media Relations Specialist, John Fuld.

The IRS has implemented many new changes to tax filing this year.

Busines using a computer to complete Individual income tax return form online for tax payment. Government, state taxes. Data analysis, paperwork, financial research, report. Calculation tax return.
Khanchit Khirisutchalual

The Key Changes

Taxpayers will see changes to credits and deductions that are adjusted for inflation, Fuld said. For example, the standard deduction for single or filing married has increased by $900. Head of Household has increased by $1,400, and the standard deduction for married filing jointly or qualifying survivor spouse has increased by $1,800.

Also, the additional tax child credit amount has increased to $1,600 which is a $600 increase, Fuld said.

There are also changes to the Clean Vehicle Tax Credit. “Now taxpayers can get up to $7,500 credit for a new, clean electric vehicle, as well as previously owned vehicles that also may qualify. But like any other credit, it’s also important that you know the rules and you qualify and the best place to get that is at irs.gov” Fuld said.

Filing income taxes
Sara Robinson, ThinkStock

There are also other helpful changes the IRS hopes taxpayers will notice because of the Inflation Reduction Act. One positive change is that more people have been added to answer the IRS toll-free lines when filers have questions, Fuld said.

Also, the IRS has expanded the call-back features where an IRS agent will call a taxpayer back and keep a filer’s place in the queue, which will also significantly reduce wait times, he said.

“We’ve also expanded our tax person to person at our taxpayer assistance centers in our local communities, and many of these have expanded hours,” Fuld said.

You can find those expanded hours at www.irs.gov. Also, with your online account, the enhanced tools include “Chat” and “Live Chatbox,” as well.

tax form with calculator, money and pen

The most widely used taxpayer service tool, “Where’s My Refund?” tool has been expanded this year, Fuld said.

It will allow taxpayers to see more detailed refund status messages in plain language. In the past, taxpayers would receive a message saying their refund was being processed and to check back later. Well, now, with these improvements, taxpayers will see clearer and more detailed updates including whether the IRS needs more information. The “Where’s My Refund?” tool also works seamlessly with mobile devices, Fuld explained.

The New Jersey Department of Treasury is also reminding taxpayers to find out if they are eligible for the state’s Earned Income Tax Credit, which was expanded in recent years to provide several hundred to several thousand dollars in relief to qualifying residents.

About 204,000 New Jerseyans are eligible for the program but don’t apply. Check the Division of Taxation’s website to determine if you are eligible. The average credit is about $826, on top of the federal credit, said State Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio.

For tax year 2023, eligible New Jersey taxpayers could receive a refundable credit of up to $2,972 with three or more qualifying dependents or $240 without dependents. Of course, the amount is determined by the taxpayer’s New Jersey gross income.

Alphabet letter wooden blocks tiles Tax season with on U.S. tax form

Is it best to file early?

Fast and accurate filing is best, Fuld said. So, before you file, be sure to have all your paperwork together to file a complete and accurate return. E-file (electronic file) is by far, the fastest, safest, and most secure way to file taxes, Fuld said.

Can you file for free?

Most taxpayers qualify for the IRS Free File Program, Fuld said. In partnership with private software companies, free tax preparation software is provided to taxpayers whose adjusted gross income is $79,000 or less for 2023.

If you don’t qualify for the IRS Free File Program, you can still e-file your return, he said.

3d Illustration depicting an illuminated neon sign with a scam concept.
solitude72 GettyImages

How to avoid tax scams

Tax filing scams are alive and well, Fuld said. Thousands of people have lost millions of dollars to personal information scams and tax scams.

“What I can tell you is this. The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text messages, or social media channels to request personal and financial information. The IRS initiates most contacts through the regular mail delivered by the good old United States Postal Service,” Fuld said.

Have a question?

If you’re filing your 2023 tax return on your own and you have a question, Fuld said the best way to contact the IRS is through their website. He said that’s the quickest and fastest way to get a response since the website is operational 24/7, with more people manning the site.

The tax filing deadline this year is April 15, 2024.

Report a correction 👈 | 👉 Contact our newsroom

These towns actually cut their property taxes in 2022

New Jersey 101.5 examined Department of Treasury data to see which municipalities saw an average drop in property taxes last year. Here are the Top 20 average tax cuts followed by the rest.

Gallery Credit: New Jersey 101.5

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM