Making Work Pay … What?

I finally got the last of the tax documents that I had been waiting for yesterday, so I decided to file my taxes today. I e-filed using TurboTax for free (I did last year too). I’m glad I did, too. If I hadn’t, I would have missed a tax credit.

I was wondering why the refund estimate that TurboTax was showing me was higher than what I estimated when I went through things before (based on paystubs since I was still waiting for tax docs). At one point, TurboTax told me about the Making Work Pay Tax Credit. ‘Scuse me … WTF is that? I didn’t see anything on the forms when I did my estimate. So I did some searching on the IRS website and found this information. I was still confused after reading it. I did some searching online, but that didn’t really clear anything up either. But I trusted TurboTax, so I forged ahead. If TurboTax was telling me I was getting a refund that was $400 more than I expected, I wasn’t going to question it. TurboTax is supposed to be accurate, so they must be right. :nailbite:

I did go back and look at the form I did my estimate on, and it turns out it was on there … line 40 of the 1040A. I usually skim over the section on credits since I never have any. I don’t have any kids or own any property or anything like that. That’ll teach me to skim over the tax forms based on how previous years have been. But then again, it was just an estimate. And that’s why I use a site like TurboTax so I can find out about things I might miss or not know about.

I don’t remember ever hearing about the “Making Work Pay Credit”. Where the hell have I been? But in my defense, I was more concerned with finding a permanent job around the time that this credit was announced. For a good part of the year, my career was in limbo since I was working contract jobs. Now that I have a permanent job again, I can pay more attention to stuff like that.

So … what am I going to do with that extra refund money? I was already planning on getting a monitor and a Windows 7 upgrade. I’ve been thinking about getting more memory for my laptop too (since I’m getting the Win7 upgrade). I was gonna go with 2GB of memory to keep the costs down, but now that I’m getting that extra money back, I might ramp it up to 4GB. I’m not convinced that I need that much memory though. The rest of the refund … well, that will go towards a down payment on a car that I’m planning to shop for in the spring. The more I can put down at the beginning, the lower the payments will be (and I doubt I’ll get much money for trading in my current car).