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Get Savvy Tax Tips and a Chance to Win a Locking File Box or $1,000

3:45 PM

I can't tell you how relieved I am to have my taxes done early this year.  But not everyone is so lucky.  Whether it's because of changes to the healthcare law, or they just needed more time to get their paperwork together, many people I know are just now filing.  If you're one of them, I have some excellent tips to help you out, compliments of Master Lock!

Find the group that fits your stage in life, and see what they recommend:

1. Recent College Graduates: Graduating from college is a great accomplishment, but many graduates face a mountain of debt owed on their student loans. Luckily, there are credits that could provide a tax break for young professionals this season:

Graduates who begin repaying their student loans may qualify for the Student Loan Interest Deduction, which would deduct up to $2,500 of qualified student loan interest. If you plan to continue your education, you may qualify for the Lifetime Learning Credit which can provide eligible students with a tax credit toward undergraduate, graduate or professional degree courses at an eligible educational institution.

2. Newlyweds: After exchanging rings and tossing the bouquet, newlyweds’ lives – and taxes – merge into one. Filing jointly with your spouse offers many advantages, and the IRS gives joint filers one of the largest deductions each year.

With a new marital status comes significant changes that could affect your taxes. It’s imperative for the names and Social Security numbers on your tax return to reflect your Social Security Administration (SSA) records. If you made changes to your name (Form SS-5) or address (Form 8822), you need to file the proper forms to notify the SSA and IRS. You should also notify your workplace to ensure your receive your W-2.

3. Parents: Raising a child to the age of 18 costs approximately $245,000 in today’s economy, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Parents can ease their burden by taking advantage of the Child Tax Credit, which offers a tax credit up to $1,000 per qualifying child. Additionally, parents who paid for child care in order to work may qualify for the Child and Dependent Care Credit, which reduces federal income tax.

4. Seniors (65+): As we age, it’s even more important to correctly prepare tax returns in order to receive the proper deductions and credits. Storing personal expenses and documentation in a secure location, such as the Master Lock Vault, will keep seniors’ personal information organized and eliminate the worry of lost or stolen paper documents that contain confidential information. If you want or need to store physical copies, keep them protected in a locking fire- and water-resistant Sentry Safe storage chest or safe.

I have loved putting my Master Lock 7148D Keyed Locking File Box to work this tax season, because it is my first metal file box with a keyed lock that safely protects and secures my personal documents, while keeping them organized for whenever I need to access them.

Wanna Win?  We are giving one lucky reader their very own Master Lock 7148D Keyed Locking file Box! To be entered to win, just fill out the form below. You have until April 11th at 11:59 EST to get your entries in. Open to U.S. residents 18+ only.

Looking for ANOTHER chance to win -- even more?  

Enter the MasterLock Tax Relief Reward Sweepstakes,
now through April 16, and any registered user of Master Lock Vault is eligible to enter for a chance to win one of five $1,000 prizes. The Master LockVault is a free, digital safe deposit box that provides a safe and secure solution for storing copies of important tax documents for easy access from any smart phone or computer. Get over to the Master Lock Vault and activate a free account; you'll get an email containing the sweepstakes entry form.

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*Sample received. Opinions are my own.

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  1. This is something everyone should have to keep their important papers in! Great review!

  2. Boy could I use this thanks for the chance to win this one.