Federal tax reform: The time is now

March 12, 2015

by Nick Novak

Originally published by The Washington Times.

As tax day approaches, there are quite a few Americans who are dreading the thought of filing their tax returns. First off, the federal tax burden is much too high in our country. Secondly, the tax code has become so complicated that it typically takes someone with advanced degrees to prepare even the simplest returns.

What bracket am I in? What percent is the rate? Do I qualify for any deductions? What about credits? What’s the difference? Should I take the standard deduction or itemize deductions? What if I own a business? Do I file a separate return? Or do I claim it as personal income? Will I owe money on April 15th? Will I get money back?

These are some of the easier questions to answer – and they only represent a minute amount of the questions that taxpayers are faced with each year.

Filing taxes should not be this complicated. Taxpayers spend more than six billion hours a year preparing their taxes. That is an astronomical amount time. To put that number in perspective, it is the equivalent to nearly 700,000 years.

According to a 2011 report published by the Laffer Center, taxpayers spend about $31.5 billion in direct outlays to file their taxes – which includes the costs of hiring a professional or purchasing tax software. The report also details other associated costs, including the dollar value of the time spent to prepare tax returns.

Continue reading at WashingtonTimes.com.