The tax man commenteth

04-15-05_image-1_thumb.jpgThink the economists in the house filed their tax returns months ago, or at least requested extensions? One tax expert, GSB professor Austan Goolsbee, filed April 12. He used Turbotax and got a “big refund,” he says. “I should have filed earlier.” Here are some observations by Goolsbee, the author of Investment, Overhang and Tax Policy and other tax-related papers.

* What are some common mistakes people make when filing taxes?
Hiding their income. Actually, the two most common mistakes are putting the federal check into the state envelope (and vice versa).

* Any advice for non-economics types on filing?
If you have any schedule C income, check out a solo 401(k) that allows you to make potentially large contributions to a retirement account tax-free.

* Any interesting new rules or allowances this year?
The phasing out of deductions is really irritating.

* Best tip(s) you’ve learned?
Start earlier next year.



Goolsbee giving the 2000 GSB commencement address.

April 15, 2005