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Those looking for big returns on their income tax check will be disappointed as pandemic breaks have ended.

Two big changes come from the Earned Income Credit and Child Tax Credit.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — While many enjoyed the benefits of the pandemic, especially during tax season, this year will look a little different according to Mark Steber, Chief Tax Information Officer with Jackson Hewitt Tax Services.

"The 2023 tax season is going to be another year for the record books in complexity, difficulty and potential refunds surprise for taxpayers," Steber shares. "It's the culmination, really, of four years of change, changes to help people, expiration of those tax changes that went back."

The two biggest changes come from Earned Income Credit (EIC) and Child Tax Credit. "The Child Tax Credit was boosted to near double for tax year 2021," Steber shares. "It went up to $3,600 per young child, fully refundable, different than it is in normal years. Same for the Dependent Care Credit. Earned Income Credit for singles also went up to $1,500 a person for qualifiers. Now that's back down to about $500. Anybody who had a new child in 2021, last year's tax return, you can add $1,400 on to all of those benefits. Well, those all expired last year."

While that may be disappointing to some, Steber has some simple, but effective ways to get this most out your refund. File early, get your money early. You don't have to be Elon Musk to know, that's pretty smart. Secondly, file early to protect your data. When you file a tax return, it gets locked up for your name and your social security number."

Second, make sure the information is accurate. "So, the first mistake people make when they either rush or wait to the last minute is they simply pay too much tax," Steber shares. "The second mistake they make, which is the cousin to paying too much tax, they missed some deductions, and they missed some credits and they missed some, you know, benefits that they might be due. The third reason why, if you don't have an accurate return, is you run the risk of an audit."

Last, get help if necessary. "A good, competent tax pro, especially an experienced tax pro will know what you look like, what your tax return should look like," Steber shares. "You question some documents; you can make sure you're pretty well covered."

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