Tax time is approaching. And calculating your federal taxes before the filing deadline can be a great way to avoid mistakes, find out what you owe and identify opportunities for maximizing your 2020 tax refund.
Learn how to estimate your taxes with the Liberty Tax® Calculator—and get answers to the most frequently asked tax questions before filing your return.
How to use Liberty's 2019-2020 Tax Calculator
The Liberty Income Tax Calculator offers a fast, simple and straightforward way to estimate your 2019 taxes.
Our three-step tax estimation process includes:
1. Collecting all tax-related materials
For the best results, it’s important to collect each document related to your 2019 income and any tax adjustments you’re eligible for beforehand. Such materials may include:
- W-2 forms (employment wages/earnings)
- 1099s (self-employment income)
- Real estate income records
- Retirement income (IRA/401k)
- Investment income records
- Charitable contributions
- Student loan interest records
- Proof of childcare expenses
- HSA & IRA contributions
- Educational expenses
- And more
2. Entering all tax information
Once your documents are in hand, our 2020 tax return calculator takes you through a step-by-step process for inputting your info and estimating your return. Our tax estimator delivers real-time results showing how each source of income, deduction and tax credit impacts your 2019 federal tax refund.
3. Viewing your results
Now that your refund has been estimated, you have the option to view and print your results—as well as to visit your local Liberty Tax® professional to identify any tax advantages that may help maximize your return.
If you’ve already filed and want to check on the status of your return, check out our tax refund tracking tool.
Frequently Asked Tax Questions For 2020
Have more questions about estimating your refund, or how to get started with our federal income tax calculator? Below, you’ll find answers to the most frequently asked tax questions our tax pros get each day:
How can I estimate my tax return and refund?
Our free tax estimator makes it fast and easy to calculate your tax return and your tax refund before filing with the IRS. Once you gather the necessary tax paperwork and follow a few simple steps, our cutting-edge tax calculator will estimate your return and the size of your 2019 refund in just minutes, ensuring you’re better prepared for 2020.
How accurate is a tax calculator?
A federal income tax calculator is only as accurate as the information you use to calculate your return. When you have all the required tax documents needed to report your 2019 income and tax paid to the IRS, the calculator will provide an accurate estimation of what you’ll get back and what you’ll owe this tax season.
How do you calculate federal income tax?
Liberty’s 2019 tax estimator calculates your federal income tax by accounting for your filing status and all instances of reported income you’ve had over the past year. Our estimator uses your taxable income to determine your 2019 tax bracket and the rate (percentage) at which your wages will be taxed by the IRS.
The tax calculator also factors in any deductions or adjustments that may help lower your taxable income and, by extension, your federal tax rate.
Additionally, tax credits like the Child Tax Credit, Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) and more may help reduce your federal tax balance and nudge your refund in the right direction.
What are the tax brackets for 2019?
The 2019 federal tax brackets are divided into seven distinct segments, each with its own unique tax rate. Federal income tax rates begin at 10% (lowest) and max out at 37% (highest), and impact your federal taxes based on your taxable income and filing status.
Learn more about the 2019 tax brackets and where you fit here.
How much tax should I pay on my salary?
Your taxable income, marginal tax rate and qualified deductions are what ultimately determine how much tax you’ll pay at the end of the year. Learning which tax advantages you’re eligible for is key to lowering your tax bracket and your federal tax bill—as well as to maximize your potential refund within the Liberty Tax® Calculator.
Note that W4 allowances can have a significant impact on your salary and what you owe at tax time. Knowing what’s withheld from each paycheck can help avoid unwanted surprises when the April deadline rolls around.
How much do you get back in taxes for a child in 2020?
The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) made the Child Tax Credit worth up to $2,000 for each qualifying child. Up to $1,400 of the CTC is refundable, meaning you may be able to get much of the Credit back as a refund after your tax bill is reduced to zero.
Also, while not refundable, the Child and Dependent Care Credit may allow you to use a percentage of last year’s childcare expenses to reduce your federal taxes. Learn more here.
Do you get a bigger tax refund if you make less money?
The size of your tax refund isn’t necessarily based on your salary, but on the number of deductions and refundable tax credits you qualify for. While taxpayers with lower taxable incomes tend to fit in lower tax brackets (and face lower overall tax rates), making less money doesn’t automatically guarantee or boost your tax refund. Instead, it’s your unique tax situation that has the biggest effect on your 2019 return.
If the tax calculator isn’t producing the results or refund you were hoping for, consult your local Liberty Tax® pro. Our tax prep team can help you identify any tax advantages you may have missed and get the refund your family deserves.