Submitted by one-eye-owl t3_1263ycv in personalfinance

Hi all,


I got off the phone with our accountant who helps us file taxes. Long story short due to some insurance issues, I owe 25k in taxes. However I'm not too sure why as monthly premiums for only equal to about 9kish.


I went through chemo and could only work part time and my income for the year as 11k.

I'm wondering if I should get a second opinion of this?

Edit: it is 25k, im still getting use to typing.
Edit2: Thank you everyone for the advice. We are getting our paper work back and filing an extension. I really appreciate the input. I will talk to my husband about a CPA after we try to E-file. We aren't too good with the computer but our daughter told us she will be home to help out with it. Thanks again all.



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Indian_Pale_Male t1_je7f4i9 wrote

Your accountant HELPS you file taxes? They don’t file your taxes? Hire someone; way more information is needed but off that bat this doesn’t sound right at all


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7fbim wrote

Yes he helps us file after we approve of it.


Indian_Pale_Male t1_je7g1lx wrote

I suggest you find someone else. I’m a tax accountant. Even if you had $75K gross income with no withholdings as married couple and lived in the highest income tax state, you wouldn’t owe more than $20K. Either that person sucks at tax, or there isn’t enough information


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7h0ut wrote

thank you so much, I'm going to ask for my paper work back and then plug it in online to see.


patrick_schliesing t1_je7ywhn wrote

TaxSlayer has been a good easy one for me


dirtydayboy t1_je823pz wrote

There's also as well


Physics_Prop t1_je87pzw wrote

the proper link is

Free for federal, so free in Texas. Very good even with a moderately complex tax situation.


UnfinishedAle t1_je89zm1 wrote

I just switched to this for this year from turbo tax and my god I can’t believe I’ve used TurboTax all these years..


Deep90 t1_je8bhbi wrote

I freaking hate TurboTax.


Besides their lobbying, its also pretty much impossible to figure what forms their pages correspond with. If you need to fill out a 1099-MISC you can't because turbotax wants to be helpful and it knows best.


Shadefeaster t1_je8p0gn wrote

They are pretty much all to blame but the real reason is because taxes are based on your word and ambiguity. The rich don't want a flat tax, they want their lawyers and accountants to cost less then their taxes so they can lie their way out of it. The only ones that get caught are the poor that can't afford them.


awkrawrz t1_je8m3zk wrote

Do they auto pull in investment data of all my trades? Bc that is the biggest doozy and benefit for me to use other services I'm already familiar with doing that.

If so, I'm switching to this next year. I'm so tired of paying to do my own taxes, but I'm not rich enough for a CPA.


nelsonnyan2001 t1_je8mrgo wrote

Depends on your 1099 and how well your brokerage formats that data. Seems like FreeTaxUSA uses some proprietary backend to soup through your 1099 forms. The "auto-import" function can be spotty but should work fine for 99% of W-2's.

Schwab's 1099 import worked fine for me, YMMV.


awkrawrz t1_je8mu8q wrote

Awesome! Thanks for sharing and I use Schwab do that is good to know!


nelsonnyan2001 t1_je8n0dw wrote

Sure! Just a heads-up - I don't day-trade and most of my taxable gains were from reinvested dividends from ETF's (and some FAANG exits) so my 1099 was incredibly simple, realistically it would've taken me 10 minutes to fill them out myself, I just wanted to see how well the import function would work.


awkrawrz t1_je8oo3f wrote

That's good to know! I may give it a try next year just for fun. Worst case I just continue with TurboTax.


RantRanger t1_je8l261 wrote

If this site is free, how do they make a living?

What is their revenue stream?


CMD2 t1_je8lu9i wrote

You can file federal for free but you pay for state filings. There are also upgrades you can get like access to live help and audit support.


CarTarget t1_je8ojly wrote

To answer about their revenue stream: The IRS free file program is a government program that partners with companies to provide free filing options. They also have services they charge for like audit protection but those are optional and just a " do you want this" at the end


wes00mertes t1_je89of7 wrote

I use this and the URL sounds like such a scam everyone I mention it to (who almost always are using TurboTax) raises an eyebrow at me.


GregorSamsaa t1_je8kewj wrote

The site has a very simple layout which also kinda gives it a scammy look to it as well lol

When I first met my now wife, she was an avid TurboTax user and refused to believe I was using a legitimate site lol


Blers42 t1_je8kxjc wrote

I just tell people they’re the first authorized IRS free filer. A google search immediately shows its legitimate.


MastodonSmooth1367 t1_je8pezb wrote

I know people hate TurboTax here and yes I agree Intuit has problems from an ethical lobbying side, but their product is one of the best out there. I've used free solutions like Credit Karma and did a heads up comparison back in 2019 and 2020. My conclusion was the numbers are the same but TurboTax has a lot more tooltips and help guides if you have questions.

My taxes are a mess now that I don't have time to do it twice to compare, but I think TurboTax is well worth it if you need to go through capital gains, etc and anything a bit more complex than a basic W-2 and 1099-INT/DIV.


dripless_cactus t1_je8r2t2 wrote

I saw someone comment once that they use a free/cheap service to actually file their taxes (I think it was FreeTaxUSA) but they go through the process on TurboTax to compare numbers. It's a little more work but I thought it was a good tactic since as I recall turbo tax only charges to file-- it's free to use and go through their checks and instructions.

I switched to FreeTaxUSA last year and found it to be perfectly adequate, but if I were less sure about it, I think it's totally worth the savings to find out what turbo tax thinks and then file elsewhere.


FrankieHellis t1_je859z2 wrote

There is an important question above. OP states they spent savings that was going to be used to open a business. Where was this money? Was it in a retirement account and therefore subject to taxes?


josephbenjamin t1_je88cxn wrote

It could be because ACA overpayment of subsidy. Would double check the reason. Also, not sure if penalty is involved, and state taxes.


patrickbabyboyy t1_je84d41 wrote

maybe if they were 1099 and not w2


Indian_Pale_Male t1_je85b34 wrote

$75K taxable still wouldn't be close. I think the only way they could've gotten to that number would be if, as other people have mentioned, they had to pay back healthcare premiums. Even then $25K might be a bit of a stretch. Most likely, these numbers OP provided are missing a ton of context to really know


merc08 t1_je8gq9n wrote

There could have been a large medical debt forgiven, which counts as income.


nelsonnyan2001 t1_je8qw22 wrote

Something to add to my ever growing collection of funny tax edge cases


bldrmpls t1_je8negj wrote

I don't know all the tax laws by far (which have their own logic--or lack thereof), but I understand accounting. Wouldn't one have to have deducted medical expenses at some point in order for them to be taxable when forgiven?


merc08 t1_je8phb9 wrote

No, you can't deduct an expense you didn't actually pay. The hospital (or their 3rd party billing) records the amount you owe and if you don't pay then after a while they are allowed to write it off as a lost expense. In doing so, they send documentation to the IRS (and to you) saying that they essentially paid you the amount you owed. It's possible OP got that letter and only thought it was forgiving the debt, without understanding the income aspect.


Buffinator360 t1_je8ddha wrote

If I'm interpreting what they said correctly they may have overclaimed ACA insurance subsidies so they possibly owe 9k in repayments and penalties?


LoveBulge t1_je8n1gz wrote

$75k after the standard deduction for Married Filing Joint, is taxable income of $48k. That's like...$5k federal only. BUT if it's $75k of self-employment income and no deductions, then it could easily hit $16k. Toss in state, then you could hit $20k.


Upnorth4 t1_je8n898 wrote

My accountant actually files my taxes. I owed $300 one year and got a refund of $1200 the next


[deleted] t1_je7furd wrote



SignorJC t1_je85nem wrote

Wholeheartedly disagree. We can definitely help by telling OP to fire whoever it is that is "helping" with their taxes, since they clearly don't know what the fuck they are doing nor how to explain it.


sancti1 t1_je86ntv wrote

I’m a cpa. More than enough


syncopator t1_je8fupq wrote

I hand scratch out my own taxes with a few complications just so I understand it before I e-file and even I know there’s enough info here to determine there’s something fucky.


DonaldDonaldBillYall t1_je8pn1r wrote

True. I made $110k and forgot to get health insurance for the year (dont ask). 0 deductions on a W2 I file as single and had to pay $2k to my state only and Federal returned $81.


Asianmamacita t1_je7wiqm wrote

You mentioned that they help you file taxes and do not file on your behalf. Are you sure they are not a ghost preparer?

“By law, anyone who is paid to prepare or assists in preparing federal tax returns must have a valid Preparer Tax Identification Number, or PTIN. Paid preparers must sign and include their PTIN on the return.”


one-eye-owl OP t1_je87pir wrote

I looked through the website and what we were told this person was certified but i'm retrieving my paper work back tomorrow and going to file an extension


creative_usr_name t1_je8adex wrote

Be aware an extension does not mean you get an extension on when you need to pay your taxes, you still need to make an estimate and pay by tax day. The extension is only for filing the return.


Asianmamacita t1_je8c9kw wrote

Yes, that’s something people don’t get about extension. It doesn’t extend the time to pay.

As for this post, If the tax preparer is incredibly off on their number, they might not owe anything or potentially already safe harbored based on 2021.


ynotfoster t1_je8bmdz wrote

Please come back and let us know what you find out. This is rather intriguing.


BornElephant2619 t1_je8ahrr wrote

Sometimes you get bad accountants. My husband hired one to do ours the first year we were married and we owed sooo much money. We took it to another accountant who said, "well yeah, they didn't do any of your deductions..." She charged us half of what the other guy had and we owed less than 1/10th of what the other person had told us. It was absolutely infuriating but a lesson learned.


jinsaku t1_je8ay3y wrote

My first CPA is serving a 20 year jail sentence for embezzlement. My current CPA firm is awesome.


BornElephant2619 t1_je8bga1 wrote

Oh gosh. That's kinda crazy, imagine losing 20 years of your life because you got greedy ... I don't think this guy gave enough effort to figure out how to embezzle. He charged us $300 (16 years ago) to do less than basic turbo tax would have. He had his own gig going.


Asianmamacita t1_je8amvd wrote

Yes tax preparers can be bad but they should still be capable of efiling for you. So the fact that he does not file for them yet “helps” them makes me think it’s a ghost preparer


Weed_Me_Up t1_je8k07f wrote

Or ours..... This was the year we had our first child so we knew we were gonna get some money back.

Friend hooked us up with a shady ass accountant. We got back more than 15k that year!

Well about 5 years later we got audited. Tried to get in touch with her, but she was in federal prison for fraud lol.

We ended up paying about 2 or 3k back to IRS so wasnt too bad


Bugle_Boy_Jeans t1_je8icxu wrote

Lmao. A "ghost preparer" isn't going to tell you you owe 25k! That's just absurd. That totally undermines the whole premise of a "ghost preparer".


mathieu_delarue t1_je7lkxg wrote

ACA insurance paybacks are real, but for 2022 the income threshold that would normally trigger a full repayment is not in effect. Put another way: a tax household making more than 400% of the federal poverty line can still qualify for the Premium Tax Credit (PTC) in 2022.

You’re right around the line (assuming no kids), but either way you have a monthly amount based on income that you are expected to pay. Everybody gets access to the middlest of the mid-tier plans (the second lowest cost silver plan) if they are willing to pay their contribution amount. The difference between your contribution amount and the mid-tier plan’s cost is your PTC. If you end up getting too much advanced, you have to pay it back.

25k is a big number, but not impossible. If you had no withholdings, maybe. If your spouse is self-employed and you didn’t pay chunky estimates, more likely. But either way a full repayment situation is maybe not so likely for a couple making less than 80k in tax year 2022. Your dude may not know the ceiling got blown off for 2022, or there may be other things in the mix that you’re not picking up on.

Good luck! If you owe you owe, but if you’re not sure you can consider paying (on time, avoiding potential penalties and interest) and then extending the filing deadline to have more time to sort it out. Or file, request an installment plan(s), and seek to potentially amend asap once you’ve gotten a clear answer.


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7y7ai wrote

hello, do you know or can recommend any type of service I can look into for this?


CabbageOnion t1_je837sj wrote

You set up the payment plan with the IRS directly, but a good tax accountant (CPA ideally) can help you with it.


Iwasahipsterbefore t1_je8bnsq wrote

A cpa or enrolled agent would be your best bets. A financial lawyer would get you there but be 4x as expensive


josephbenjamin t1_je88pis wrote

I just posted about this, but didn’t read your post. Your provided great detail! Good stuff


Impossible_Mix61274 t1_je82zth wrote

First, I hope you are doing well. Chemo can be rough physically and emotionally.

Did you take money from anywhere else to supplement your income when you weren’t able to work full time?


one-eye-owl OP t1_je87dxu wrote

Thank you so much, So during diagnoses and then chemo i had very rough time so I couldn't work much. I withdrew from my savings account and some cash i kept.


Impossible_Mix61274 t1_je8843t wrote

I thought maybe you took money from something like a retirement account or another restricted asset type that led to your higher taxes but it doesn’t sound like it


one-eye-owl OP t1_je88ior wrote

No we immigrated a little later in life and between putting out kids to school and owning a small home we did not learn about roth ira and 401k until later down the road. I am filing an extension to get things sorted though so hopefully it give us some time to get it together. thanks you again


SoullessCycle t1_je8b98g wrote

Haven’t read through all your comments yet, but just in case no one else mentions it: an extension means you have more time to file, not that you have more time to pay.

You’re going to get into owing penalties if you don’t pay what you owe by April 15.


Evan_Th t1_je8l14h wrote

April 18th this year, to be precise: the 15th and 16th are the weekend, and the 17th is a holiday in the District of Columbia.


izzymaestro t1_je8kqac wrote

Ok immigrated might be a whole different issue. Did your savings come from a foreign held asset or account?

If so, you may very well be subject to foreign income tax if you haven't previously declared the asset.


TyrconnellFL t1_je7esas wrote

What “insurance issues” change your taxes? Your insurance premiums are paid to insurance companies and have nothing to do with April tax time.

You probably need a new accountant. Try plugging it into FreeTaxUSA or TurboTax yourself.


kylejack t1_je7ex13 wrote

>What “insurance issues” change your taxes? Your insurance premiums are paid to insurance companies and have nothing to do with April tax time.

If they're on insurance and claimed advanced premium tax credits and then made too much to qualify, they'll owe that money back.


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7f6l9 wrote

Yeah we bought insurance through We didn't get a monthly bill and we assumed it would be like last year where we'd owe about 4-5k. However this year it was 25k. Not sure why though as again i did the math and the premiums only add up to about 9k without the advancement.


AllTheyEatIsLettuce t1_je7t67t wrote

Something has gone very, very wrong with calculating how much, if anything at all, you owe Treasury to repay what it paid an insurance seller on your behalf.


kylejack t1_je7j3ou wrote

Are either of you self employed


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7jw6r wrote

I worked as a barber and receive a 1099 yes while he works as a welder


kylejack t1_je7kbcx wrote

He welds for an employer or self employed?


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7y0ok wrote

thank you for your help! he works as w2 employee


sir_richard_head t1_je7z5h8 wrote

Does he work full time? Does his employer offer insurance? How many people work at his company?


one-eye-owl OP t1_je80ae0 wrote

i believe it is a 30-50 person company and he does work full time. They offer insurance but for the last few years it was cheaper through the market place.


itackle t1_je837py wrote

That could be it. You don’t qualify for a subsidy if your employer, or spouses employer, offers a suitable plan. I don’t remember the specifics of the plan, but a good chance that’s it.


i_identify_as_natty t1_je8a71e wrote

Would that really add up to 25k or even 20k though?


last_rights t1_je8dgpa wrote

It could. Each of my family members is $550 a month on the marketplace, and we are all fairly young and in good shape. My roommate is $1200 monthly but qualifies for Medicaid instead because she is retired.


Andrew5329 t1_je8hy97 wrote

For a full family plan? Easily. I'm on an individual HSA plan and my employer's contribution alone is $9,250, plus my personal contributions of about $1200/year.

If OP is eating the entire unsubsidized cost of a family plan $20-25k is possible. It's also likely the subsidy repayments are only part of the bill, e.g. if they didn't pre-pay enough taxes in advance since OP was self employed.


prodiver t1_je8mcnj wrote

> Would that really add up to 25k or even 20k though?

By itself, no.

But the 25k would be the subsidy repayment, plus income tax on 75k income, plus self employment tax on OP's 11k income.

All that added together could easily be 25k.


rkalo t1_je8fosk wrote

Monthly premiums for two people would easily be 1k a month, that's just for coverage. OP shed light that they went through cancer treatment so I believe it.


Andrew5329 t1_je8j4ti wrote

That doesn't affect individual rates anymore. The insurance can charge your company a higher or lower rate than mine, but within our respective company "pools" everyone gets offered the same plans/rates.

It's one of the biggest drivers for corporate outsourcing. High wage workers demand a high quality health plan. On a $100k base the expense for a $25k plan makes sense. On a $35k salary, not so much , so now those people work for 'Facilities Mgmt LLC' which does the same non-core work but only has crappy benefits.


buried_lede t1_je87oua wrote

Is he self-employed, does he get a 1099 or a w2?

If he is, he’ll owe social security on top of taxes but can the self employed still deduct insurance premiums? So, yeah, get to a cpa to sort this out


ObiWanCanShowMe t1_je8a30g wrote

that is subsidized healthcare, the cost you see isn't the real cost. When someone does not qualify, they pay the real cost. is for poor people and the rest of us pay for it, you are now in the rest of us category.

BTW, get a real accountant that can do your taxes for you as others have said.


buried_lede t1_je87jnz wrote

There is something way off with the insurance calculations. Does the exchange know what your income was? You made less in 2022, right? And the health exchange was updated on your income, right? And you downloaded the tax credit form that the exchange generates each year?

It might be worth it to go to an actual cpa to sort this out for you this time and get you on the right track for next year. A cpa- certified public accountant.

You can try the online tax programs yourself first to see if anything obvious pops up but it sounds like a cpa would really help you. Ask around for recommendations for a cpa where you live.

Is your husband self-employed?


one-eye-owl OP t1_je87uvx wrote

hello, thank you for the advice.

he is a w2 employee. We are going to get out paper work back and file an extension to sort this out


buried_lede t1_je8b69a wrote

W2, hmm it sounds like something is very wrong. You might not need an extension. A cpa could probably sort it out quickly

Good luck! Don’t lose hope or stress out. It could end up being what it sounds like, an error.


aldomars2 t1_je8dt67 wrote

Are you saying you signed up for healthcare through the marketplace then you didn't pay any monthly premiums?

Did you get a 1095a form in the mail? You can also get it on


Ill_Psychology_7966 t1_je7wsvv wrote

This is why I like to call it the Un-affordable Care Act. I’m self-employed, and I have private insurance. Don’t even get me started. We have the worst, most expensive, least healthy, healthcare system in the world. And the hospitals and providers love it!


saruin t1_je8hkuk wrote

I've had the same but opposite issue. I didn't make enough money but I was still able to claim the tax credit because my estimated income was within the FPL limits (at the time of enrollment). So I should be in the clear, in theory. I could very well get some fine or tax bill in the future but others have assured me that shouldn't be the case.


AllTheyEatIsLettuce t1_je7swi3 wrote

The one where you owe Treasury some/all of the public funds subsidy it paid an insurance seller in 2022 because it turned out you earned more money than you or Treasury guessed you would.

>Your insurance premiums are paid to insurance companies

Treasury's funds are paid to insurance sellers,

>and have nothing to do with April tax time.

and have absolutely everything to do with April tax time.


CommissionerChuckles t1_je7vdni wrote

The things to look at here are:

  • Is there a basic math error somewhere?

  • Would filing separately instead of jointly be better? With a low annual income your repayment amount should be capped to a much smaller amount.

  • If filing jointly, how much of the repayment of APTC is included with your Self-employed health insurance deduction?


chzie t1_je8aetl wrote

It honestly sounds like your accountant is either shady, or incompetent. Hire a CPA to sort it out for you, and they should probably check into the last few years as well.

A good CPA will be able to do your taxes in 15 mins and is typically cheaper than a chain also.


NailFin t1_je7xoa5 wrote

You need to get a second opinion. I’m in the state of North Carolina and I claim 0 dependents though I have some. I figure about .8 of my salary goes to taxes, so if you make $75,000 before taxes times .8, your would make about $60,000 after taxes. That’s means you should pay/owe about $15,000. That’s not a perfect system, but it’s been fairly accurate for us. Essentially, I overpay with the dependents and get money back.


SDSunDiego t1_je8a23g wrote

It's even less for them. When you consider the standard deduction they are paying ~50% of tax on their taxable income. Obviously something is wrong or information is missing.

Edit: mentioned husband in the comments


one-eye-owl OP t1_je80oek wrote

I am on the eastern coast as well. Do you know of any chains or recommendations for either h&r block or something like that?


thegreatgazoo t1_je81m6q wrote

skip the chains.

Try something like It's free for federal and something like $15 for state.

If you're getting chemo, you might be at the threshold where you can start deducting medical expenses.

Have you paid any taxes along the way, file and pay your quarterlies? I presume he had taxes withheld?


Logisticsbitches t1_je840ve wrote

If she's being told she owes $25k a self serve website isn't going to help. It's worth a couple hundred to make sure it's done right by a professional.


thegreatgazoo t1_je86aqz wrote

It's not a bad double check. I suspect something was typed in wrong. I had that briefly because my HSA withdrawals weren't entered correctly.

Either way, use a pro and not some place that has a mascot jumping around out in front. It's generally better and less expensive.


mntgoat t1_je8kggg wrote

A little over 20 years ago I went to one of those chains and was told I owed 2k, which was ok, I had been w2 part of the year but 1099 the other part. But I decided to try a non chain guy, and instead walked out with a 500 refund. I don't trust the chains at all.


TheBeesSteeze t1_je8fs7h wrote

Go on Google Maps, make sure its zoomed out to your city.

Search "Tax Accountant" or "CPA"

Find 2 or 3 independent tax accountants in your area with the best reviews. Skip chains like H&R block and Jackson Hewitt.

Call the firms you found, ask for a quote, see if they seem like a good fit. Choose one and use them.


NailFin t1_je8hko4 wrote

Also, to be clear, that $15,000 that you would “owe” would’ve been deducted by your employer throughout the year. So by the end of the year it should be pretty even. There are the trump “tax cuts” that are going into effect this year, so idk how that changes it yet.


Lopsided_Mountain963 t1_je7ts5w wrote

This is about right I’d your husband didn’t pay any taxes in on his salary. Given the 11k you made, I’m guessing you paid very little in, if any, also.

Get a second opinion.


dodexahedron t1_je8dxq4 wrote

Stop using them. You don't earn enough to be paying someone to do your taxes, and there are some yellow/red flags from what you've shared.

Go to (yes it is legit and IRS-endorsed), spend about 20 minutes putting in the info it asks for (W2s and any 1099s youve gotten, basically), and have your lowest cost or best refund calculated and your federal return filed for free and your state return ready to file for like $8.


TheBeesSteeze t1_je8g9oo wrote

They are about to pay $25,000 in taxes and you are suggesting they use Free Tax USA? To save a couple hundred?? They need a good accountant, maybe even an attorney to sort this out. There are tens of thousands of dollars on the line.


dodexahedron t1_je8gxg4 wrote

The suggestion is because they're quite possibly getting bad advice and, at minimum, need a second opinion. The situation sounds shady for at least the reason of this person preparing but not filing for them, which suggests either they're unqualified to do so or potentially trying to scam them, even if just for billable hours.

And it's free. So literally no skin off their noses. If the result jives with what the accountant said, they have confirmation. If the result doesn't match up at least in the same ballpark, they can either accept it or get a new accountant or tax law attorney.


TheBeesSteeze t1_je8hebr wrote

> The suggestion is because they're quite possibly getting bad advice and, at minimum, need a second opinion. The situation sounds shady for at least the reason of this person preparing but not filing for them, which suggests either they're unqualified to do so or potentially trying to scam them, even if just for billable hours.

Totally agree

> If the result jives with what the accountant said, they have confirmation.

Disagree. In this scenario, just because a bad accountant and basic free tax software both say you owe a bunch of money do not validate one another. In fact that's probably all this "accountant" is doing for them and I would be surprised if the numbers weren't pretty similar.

A good tax accountant should easily make back their fee and thousands more. Considering there is $25,000 at stake, I think they can afford a little more than $8 to verify there is no way to pay a smaller amount.


dodexahedron t1_je8icak wrote

I make a couple times their combined income and have several non-work income sources, and various things which require me to itemize deductions. My taxes are "complex" compared to most people's. I have NEVER needed to pay someone to do my taxes. And I've had a similar insurance situation to what OP describes.

Taxes aren't rocket science, any anyone required to report anything is also required to send you a w2 or 1099, so you legally WILL receive everything you need to do it. Even if you do it on paper, by hand, it's comically easy, with step-by-step, very explicit instructions for every single item. You don't even have to do any math beyond simple addition and subtraction. Everything else is pre-calculated to way beyond their income in tables the IRS publishes for free, and the instructions tell you exactly what forms/tables to look at.

Don't be scared of tax preparation.

And you seem to be assuming this service is somehow sub-par. It's not. It's been around at least 20 years and is vetted by the IRS. And it doesn't play tricks with you like H&R Block does, to try to get you to pay for things. Simple, no-nonsense, and thorough tax preparation.

Why would you not just do it to at least compare? Come on...


TheBeesSteeze t1_je8kgwv wrote

Yes, I also do my own taxes. I'm well aware of it's advantages.

Maybe you're right. They should just use the online software and if it says $25,000 as well, they should just pay this incredibly life changing amount without a second thought.

Silly me thinking they might want to consult at least ONE independent tax accountant who might be able to help out this person who obviously isn't very financially literate and could be making a huge mistake in some assumption or input.


dodexahedron t1_je8kqwi wrote

You're putting words in my mouth, and making some assumptions that aren't valid. I didn't say any of that. Agreed that an attorney or a well-reputed tax accountant is a good idea, if it looks like they will be on the hook for this massive sum. But, a no-cost option for initial comparison is a wise minimum before proceeding, and there definitely are red flags about the current preparer, at least from what OP has shared.

Have a nice night.


TheBeesSteeze t1_je8kx74 wrote

> And it's free. So literally no skin off their noses. If the result jives with what the accountant said, they have confirmation. If the result doesn't match up at least in the same ballpark, they can either accept it or get a new accountant or tax law attorney.

You literally said the opposite earlier. My point was that they should get a second professional consult if they are about to pay the $25,000.

Anyways, glad we agree now. Cheers.


techsuppr0t t1_je8guom wrote

If u make a large salary it's worth paying a professional to do ur taxes. Tho I definitely recommend freetaxusa. It's like identical technology to turbo tax etc just free. Every time I do my taxes with turbo they make me either redo my return or pay $100 or some shit and it's hard to actually do it free. But free tax usa is legit af. If you just work a normal w2 job or 1099 too in lower brackets it's perfect and everybody should use it.

Tho somebody else was saying to plug their info into TurboTax and just see what it comes up with to compare to the accountant. If they are doing something big wrong it would be noticeable.


dodexahedron t1_je8hgy6 wrote

They don't. Combined they make 75k. That's not much, especially combined. People (myself included) who make multiple times that don't pay accountants to do our taxes, because it's just not necessary. And that's with various investments, itemized deductions, and non-job sources of income that generate 1099s.

H&R Block and its ilk have done a fantastic job of convincing everyone that taxes are hard or complex or that you're going to get in trouble if you make one little mistake. Even if you get audited and are found to owe something you didn't pay, you're just given the chance to pay up (potentially with interest) and everything is fine. Then you file an amended return, pay the difference, and go on with your life.


titleywinker t1_je8jm1a wrote

Does your 1095-A have all 0s in Column 2 by any chance?


anonykitten29 t1_je8afga wrote

I paid $300 to hire an accountant to do my taxes. It was not substantially more expensive than going with TurboTax. And saved me thousands.


titleywinker t1_je8jqeu wrote

That’s cheaper than turbotax. $399 for CPA help through them, and that’s with no state


captnfirepants t1_je81jll wrote

You need to hire a lawyer who specializes in tax issues. They can help you get an offer in compromise.

It's where you prove how poor you are and the irs will take peanuts on the dollar.

I owed 15k and ended up paying $500. you are required to file on time the next five years or you lose the offer and have to pay the whole thing back.

The lawyers aren't cheap but, better then 25k


Majeye t1_je8dljk wrote

I feel like there is information left out of this post.

Things like consolidating debt, student loan cancelations, lottery winnings, etc are all considered "income" in the eyes of the IRS, which could be why the taxes are so high.

We don't have enough information here to make educated guesses as to what they should do other than to hire a new CPA / seek a new accountant.


Grevious47 t1_je7nxij wrote

There is no way you would owe 22k in taxes if 75k is the entirety of your income.

There is no way that medical bills and insurance payouts can cause you to owe taxes...I dont even know what you mean by that.

Do you have other sources of income? Did you have basically no taxes witheld for more than one year and just failed to file taxes last year? If you filed taxes last year how much did you owe then and what has changed if anything?

Also is it 22k or 25k, your title and post arent the same.


one-eye-owl OP t1_je7xt3h wrote

I apologize, I'm still having issues with typing and such but the amount that was quoted to be 25k.


Grevious47 t1_je7yxq0 wrote

Thanks for clarifying.

Did you file and pay taxes last year?


one-eye-owl OP t1_je80g4m wrote

I did file taxes and we had to repay about 5k


Grevious47 t1_je81r0q wrote

..and why did you owe so much last year? Was your witholding incorrect? Did you earn more or less last year?

Those questions are relevant to figuring out why you owe so much this year. You should look at last years taxes and see what went wrong then.


ViralLola t1_je87eum wrote

I'm scratching my head over this because the math ain't mathin'. Your accountant helps you file your taxes but doesn't file them for you? Fire them and hire somebody better.


TheBeesSteeze t1_je8f8sz wrote

Find a new accountant, even if they cost $500 they will very likely save you thousands, making it worth it. Something feels like it's missing.

If another accountant still says you owe tens of thousands, consider hiring a lawyer specializing in accounting like another commenter suggested.

Filing an extension doesn't help you unless you are going to extend AND pay the 25k by April 15. Which is totally acceptable and you will get that money back when you file your tax returns.


annyongsoup t1_je8hfbv wrote

If you haven’t contributed to a traditional IRA, set up the account at a brokerage and contribute the maximum you can to lower the AGI to below 400% poverty line. This allows you to only pay the cap amount ($2800) for repaying the subsidy you received.

This is a method I used to help my parents in a similar situation. You will have to pay tax when you withdraw from traditional IRA but at least you get the money back one day. If you are not comfortable with investing, just leave the money in there and don’t touch it.

Like others have said, shop your CPA around and ask if they are an enrolled agent. Then tell the CPA you need methods to lower your AGI to below the threshold and they can give you tools to do so based on your individual situation. Don’t panic, you got this! No way you pay this much back. I hope your health get better!


annyongsoup t1_je8ilyr wrote

Also, I know having the cash on hand to put into the 2022 traditional IRA can be difficult. Make sure you find a good CPA first


bububuffmelikeyoudo t1_je8jupg wrote

TurboTax is so easy. Stop losing money to an accountant if you’re making just 75k combined.


D1rtyH1ppy t1_je89saw wrote

Plug everything into TurboTax and see what comes up


GeneticsGuy t1_je8giq4 wrote

Were you paid on a 1099? That could explain taxes like this. Screws a lot of people over that don't set aside taxes


marie-feeney t1_je8pn3v wrote

Assume you are not in Calif. We get extension until end of Oct with no payments, estimated tax or anything due until then. Fed and State taxes


SKTwenty t1_je7ri6p wrote

I don't think there's any way you could possibly owe 22k if you only made 11k this year. Even if your SO earned the remainder of that 75k. Consult a professional in this field, reddit won't be able to help you outside of letting you know that something fishy is going on.


Karsticles t1_je82iwu wrote

Use freetaxusa instead and see what it says.


420ciskey420 t1_je8786f wrote

Why not just pay a cpa $150 to file your return


fr33dom35 t1_je8cwgr wrote

What's giving rise to the 25k tax bill? It obviously isn't your income.

Did you have any loans forgiven? Collect any punitive damages?


IndividualStay5084 t1_je8gr9y wrote

I would recommend you search for someone who is a tax expert. Someone with expertise involving taxes. Check and verify their experience along with reviews. You might have to pay a little bit more for their knowledge. If you get the right person. It will be well worth it. I wish you success.


Financial-Ear1634 t1_je8hcl9 wrote

if you owe money an extension does not delay your pay date. you will get fines or interest payments. OWED money is always due the 15th or earlier.

just an fyi.

get a cpa. google a local one. explain the situation. with a w2 generally the employer takes out taxes, so something is wrong with this picture. if you find someone whos sympathetic and the problem is an easy fix it could be under $500. assuming its straightforward and you dont have crypto and 10 brokerages and income from 8 jobs etc.

if its really straightforward (1 job, 1 investment account, nothing else) just use HRblock/walmart type of thing.


saruin t1_je8j15s wrote

If you haven't already you may look to a health insurance broker to you help select plans and such in the future (to my understanding many if not all work for no fees). Mine helps me get free insurance but only because I'm low income and all she has to know is exactly how much money I predict I'll make throughout the year (and notifying her of any major changes in income).

I had a similar issue filing taxes earlier and didn't make enough money. Long story short, I did something wrong at first on my tax return and did it again to find the page I was looking for. It said that even though I didn't make enough money I could still quality for premium tax credit based on certain criteria and most importantly that my estimated income was within FPL income at the time of enrollment (I lost my job at the same time basically). Just something to look into. I'm kinda nervous I'll somehow still get fined or have to pay it back but others (a tax person and insurance broker) have assured me that shouldn't be the case if I made very low money.


probablywrongbutmeh t1_je8k775 wrote

Sounds like you have back taxes or something that isnt evident based on your post


FirePlug12 t1_je8q37m wrote

IS your insurance by any chance through the marketplace that the government offers?


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