Tuesday, April 6, 2010

A Taxing Experience

I just JUST filed my taxes.  I know, nothing like waiting until the last minute.  I was a little busy lately...and I had one heckova time getting the dumb thing completed as:

(1) I waited too long 

(2) didn't have all the right forms printed 

(3) added a business to my life 

(4) forgot about a million different charitable donations until the last second 

(5) hate doing this so it was just annoying 

(6) couldn't remember half of the necessary passwords to my 2 million online accounts 

(7) was over-tired and could care a less about paperwork after teaching all day.

GREAT combination when you really need to concentrate!

I used TurboTax, which I would recommend in a heartbeat.  They thought of everything I forgot.  No really, EVERYTHING.  Lots of random questions, though:  they actually asked me if I purchased my first home in Washington DC.  Shouldn't there be a setting that opts out of stupid questions, especially if you are filing under a specific state?!  

After a while, the messages TurboTax would give me became amusing.  I think I was getting a bit punchy...  WE?  WE're off to a great start?  Well, thanks for coming along for the ride TurboTax!

Ann came along for the ride, too, as she was on the other end of the phone, answering a million of my stupid questions.  Honestly, I should just funnel my refund directly to her as a tax advisor fee!

I found it ironic that Sheboygan, WI is once again listed on my Tax Forms.  Why?  Because our district Health Savings Account plan is based in Sheboygan.  Go figure.  I move halfway across the country only to have my hometown be the headquarters for my health plan.   

Did you know that Household items do not include Autos, boats or planes?  Dang.  There goes my boat donation for 2009.  

About 4 hours into the process, I locked myself out of Nelnet.com, which would have given me all the information I needed to complete my taxes and file last night.  Completely forgot the correct password, and it locked the account.

Called the Nelnet 1-888 customer service number.

They told me to login to Nelnet.com

See a pattern!?  Argh.  

Did you know you get logged out of your Health Savings Account, too, if you let more than 10 minutes of non-activity expire?  Yup.  Good luck remembering THAT password after 11pm.

Red numbers at the top of the screen on TurboTax?  BAD.

Green numbers at the top of the screen on TurboTax?  GOOD.

At a certain point, I grabbed Sticky Notes and stuck them to the screen so I could stop focusing on those stupid red/green numbers going up and down.  At one point, the number I owed was 4 digits.  NOT cool.  

Did you know that your *(&@#$*^ computer will shut down if you happen to quickly ignore the "your computer is running on less than 5% battery power" alarm. Argh.

"Sorry, but without a child...."  Really?  I need to be reminded by the TAX program 10 times that I am without child?  Argh.

"Do you expect this money to ultimately be routed to a foreign bank account?"

Yes, please forward ALLLL the money I'm expecting to my foreign bank account.  Honestly.  Do you really think I would TELL the IRS that I even HAVE a foreign bank account?!

The Community Question Board was one of the helpful parts of using TurboTax.  Just when I'd need to ask another stupid question, I'd see someone else had thought of the same dumb question along the side, and thankfully, TurboTax had answered it in detail.  However, I did find this particular Community Question amusing.  I find it odd that someone is concerned that they are receiving $8K as their refund.  Take it and RUN!

Creepy little TurboTax man, waving the "don't give up or throw the computer just yet" flag.  I'd like to know where his legs are.  I bet he lost them FILLING OUT HIS TAXES.  Argh.  

Such a cheerleader, that TurboTax!  

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