A professional tax preparer can help people navigate the intricacies of the tax system, especially when it comes to certain deductions and procedures that may not be widely understood by many.

For example, a retired parent recently sent an inquiry to a finance columnist with the Newark Star-Ledger newspaper about a cash gift of $25,000 they had given their adult son.

In her response, columnist Karin Price Mueller acknowledged that IRS regulations can be "tricky" about such matters. According to Mueller, taxpayers can give a gift to any individual of up to $13,000 without having to file a Form 709, which is a gift tax return form.

She went on to cite a financial expert who said that a married couple can give up to a $26,000 gift to an individual, but that at that point, they will need to file separate gift returns. With that in mind, one solution she offered was each parent to give their own separate checks.

"Millions of taxpayers overpay their taxes each year. They may continue to overlook deductions or make the same mistakes year after year. How tax changes and credits affect a taxpayer may be determined by their income levels and other individual factors. Spending time with a professional who will investigate every possible break and deduction for you, then offer advice based on your individual tax situation may keep you from overpaying," said John Hewitt, CEO of Liberty Tax Service.

When it comes to potentially complicated tax questions such as these, people often find that a paid professional can provide the guidance they need to make the most of their return.

Every effort has been taken to provide the most accurate and honest analysis of the tax information provided in this blog. Please use your discretion before making any decisions based on the information provided. This blog is not intended to be a substitute for seeking professional tax advice based on your individual needs.