Weather Forecast


Tax time is taxing on our system

There is an old age expression that "We can be sure of two things in life Death and Taxes." Sounds pretty grim but unfortunately, it is quite true.

This time of the year is an expensive and scary part of our lives. It is time to pay the piper, we work hard everyday, trying to make ends meet, work overtime to meet unexpected situations, and every pay period shows us how little we get for our efforts.

If you work for a business or company, the stress of figuring out the complicated calculations is left to someone whose sole purpose is to juggle numbers, and who knows the ins and outs of tax regulations and laws. If you, on the other end, are self-employed, it becomes a total nightmare. You are forced to wear "many hats."

First you have the daily responsibility to attend to the working part of your business by accomplishing the physical and mental side of your work. Then budgeting your income to meet the bills, and on top of that you have to figure out how to prepare your taxes and fill out the necessary forms to send to the government. And of course, more often than not, send a big fat check to cover the debt.

Some people are good at this. They make sure to keep all their files, receipts and mileage logs in order. They understand the instructions and guidelines to get the job done. It's a tedious process but they seem to breathe through it. Unfortunately, the majority of us do not handle this process very well.

I personally have always hired someone who can do the task for me. I really do not understand all the financial intricacies of tax filing. I was never good at math, and to be truthful it scares me. Whenever we have to deal with a governmental agency, fear and mistrust come to mind. So I try to be conscientious by keeping a file of all expenses and income and when tax time comes, I send the whole works to my accountant. It is so much easier this way. I do not have to spend sleepless nights wondering if the tax boogie man is going to come knocking on my door in the middle of the night telling me I missed reporting some of my hard earned money.

When the whole process is completed, I walk into my accountant's office, look at him and say, "Okay, sir. Time to get depressed. How much do I owe?" And painfully, I write the check.

Of course, taxes have been around for millenniums. We have to pay them or else consequences can be dramatic. The Ostrich approach does not seem to work out very well. So once again, it is time to bite the bullet and cough up the cash, while convincing ourselves that we are being good citizens.