NYT: New Tax Forms Smaller, But Not Necessarily Less Complicated

NYT: New Tax Forms Smaller, But Not Necessarily Less Complicated

The new version of the income tax form is indeed postcard-sized as promised, but only because it leaves off a number of popular deductions and makes taxpayers search for them – and tally them up – on six accompanying worksheets, The New York Times reported on Tuesday.

The Times obtained a draft copy of the new version of the standard 1040 income tax form, which is set for release this week.

It does eliminate more than half of the 78-line items from the previous form, reducing it from two full pages of text to one double-sided half page.

But smaller is not necessarily simpler, the Times pointed out, because common deductions, such as those for student loan interest and teaching supplies are on the accompanying worksheets, as are business income, capital gains and several other forms of income, as is a dedicated line for child care expenses.

The idea of a postcard-sized income tax form has long been a promise of conservatives, who have said that current forms are too long and cumbersome for many Americans, according to The Hill.

However, Democrats say the new form is not simpler for most Americans, as it “only adds needless complexity and confusion,” said Texas Rep. Lloyd Doggett, the top Democrat on the Subcommittee on Tax Policy.

In addition, the Times points out that currently, with the old form, more than 90 percent of taxpayers filed their taxes online, which helps the IRS with processing.

But the additional worksheets in the new form could actually create more paperwork for some taxpayers and also make it more burdensome for the Internal Revenue Service to process.

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