Globally, most governments have put in place a system which aids the government in meeting public expenditures: tax. In simple terms, a tax is a compulsory charge imposed on a taxpayer, (which may be an individual or an entity) by a governmental organization to get funds for the mentioned expenditures.
A majority of the states worldwide have tax with the exception of a few countries like Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, Bermuda and so on.
Well, in the United States it is mandatory to pay tax. For a long time, the IRS has had a tough time battling tax protestors who come up with all kinds of a school of thought and mislead people into thinking that they are not supposed to be paying tax.
However, in 2010, the IRS was able to release a rebuttal for the variegated anti-tax arguments. In that document, the government agency confirmed that the law asserts that federal income tax must be paid.
Is it mandatory to file returns?
This may sound new, but not everyone needs to file a federal tax return. It does not, however, mean that there are no people that still file their returns: there still are. But the particular persons are unfamiliar with IRS requirements.
Before you file your returns, there are a number of things that you need to put into consideration. Also, some confusion may arise as to whether you should be filing your return if you do not owe any tax. Note that having a filing requirement and not owing tax are two separate things. The rules still stand: IRS has confining guidelines when it comes to who is supposed to file.
What are the IRS filing requirements?
1. Rules for self-employed business owners
What does being self-employed mean? It basically means that your source of income does not originate from an employer. Rather, you get it by providing services to other businesses or individuals or you operate a business as a sole proprietor or in a partnership.
When it comes to self-employed individuals, you are required to file returns if you have a minimum of $400 net earnings.
2. Dependents and children
The guidelines that hold for this group are different. In as much as children are claimed on someone else’s returns. They are still required to file theirs. The rules being different for dependents and children being can be attributed to the fact that they are governed by reduced deduction amounts.
Filing for refunds is not a requirement per say, but you may be required to file for this if you are seeking a tax refund. Refunds may result from taxes being detained from other payments and pay checks.
Also, if you are eligible for refundable tax credits, the only way you can get a refund is by filing a tax return.
4. Conventional filing requirement
Last but not least, the IRS has filing guidelines that cover most taxpayers too. For general filing, the law provides that you are supposed to do it if your gross income exceeds automatic deductions for that particular year.