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The WSJ Tax Guide 2022: What to Know Now About Tax Filing and Refunds

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Illustration: Mira Lou

Get ready for a wild tax season.

Every year more than 200 million Americans sign and send income-tax returns to the Internal Revenue Service. But the 2022 filing season will be like no other: Millions of taxpayers still haven’t had returns they filed in 2021 processed, while tens of millions of this year’s filers will have to grapple with reporting requirements for stimulus payments or expanded child tax credits.

In…

Get ready for a wild tax season.

Every year more than 200 million Americans sign and send income-tax returns to the Internal Revenue Service. But the 2022 filing season will be like no other: Millions of taxpayers still haven’t had returns they filed in 2021 processed, while tens of millions of this year’s filers will have to grapple with reporting requirements for stimulus payments or expanded child tax credits.

The 2022 WSJ Tax Guide

Follow this link to download the latest edition of the Journal’s overview of the world of taxes.

In a historic move, Congress had the IRS prepay a portion of the expanded credits in monthly installments during 2021. While this change put cash in the pockets of many families, it will shrink refunds many filers are anticipating, as well.

These unique challenges will complicate a process that is already profoundly confusing to millions who have to comply with it—for good reason. Now over 100 years old, the tax code is encrusted with layers of interacting provisions that shift slightly when some parts of it but not others are adjusted for inflation annually.

Congress also frequently changes both tax rates and specific provisions. For example, the tax credit for an 8-year-old child was $1,000 for 2017, $2,000 for 2018-20, and $3,000 for 2021. It will drop to $2,000 for 2022 and $1,000 after 2025, unless lawmakers act again.

To help, The Wall Street Journal has prepared the fifth edition of the WSJ Tax Guide, which subscribers can download free by following this link. Published annually since 2018, the Guide by WSJ tax reporters

Laura Saunders
and

Richard Rubin
provides an overview of key income-tax provisions for individuals and tracks relevant changes for each year. It also includes a look ahead to changes Congress is considering.

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS

What tax questions do you have around your 2021 returns? Join the conversation below.

In addition, the Guide covers perennial issues such as income-tax rates and brackets, tax issues for homeowners and state- and local-tax deductions. It also has special sections for first-time filers as well as widows and widowers.

The U.S. income tax now affects nearly every facet and phase of Americans’ lives, it seems: working and investing; having children and saving for college and retirement; paying for medical care; buying and selling homes; estate planning. With the WSJ Tax Guide, readers can learn about the provisions that matter to them.

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