A closeup of a man filling out his tax forms

The Five Stages of Tax Season Emotions

Each year between January and April, I experience the same five emotions as tax season plays out. I’m not denying that I may be a bit of an emotional rollercoaster from time to time (who isn’t?) but nonetheless, the same feelings come back year after year.

1. Annoyance. “Is it really that time of year again?” Tax season – two little words that are loud enough to make even my calm and collected father annoyed – but especially us transient military families. Ugh. “Not only did we PCS this past year and are still living with a few unpacked boxes here and there, now I have to dig out last year’s tax returns?” I repeat: Ugh.

2. Procrastination. I realize that some people are really awesome and file taxes early to get their refunds sooner, but then there are people like me. “I’ll get to that next week.” Repeat weekly until April. Meanwhile …

3. Anger. “WHY do I have to do this each year? Why is this required? I have too much going on to deal with this stuff! Which state is my home of residence now, anyhow? I hate tax season.”

4. Fear. “Gosh, that April 18th deadline is getting awfully close. I probably should have started getting my returns and receipts in order sooner. Oh no! What if I can’t find everything in time? What if I owe money? I have to get a move on this before it’s too late!”

5. Relief. Ah, sweet relief. “My taxes are finally filed, and I don’t have to think about them again for another 8 months.”

I realize the tax filing process can be frustrating no matter what because it’s just not a fun experience. Enter MilTax tax services, available exclusively from Military OneSource. As a military spouse (service member or survivor), I’m eligible for elite tax services from Military OneSource. So the only thing that makes tax season a little less annoying is knowing that I have help – free help – just because my husband is a rockstar. I mean … service member.

As for procrastinating, Military OneSource seems to have that covered too. I choose to e-file using their MilTax software so I can go at my own pace (and take breaks when my toddler wakes up from nap time) without losing any of the work I’ve already done. But if e-filing isn’t your cup of tea, you can call Military OneSource for an over-the-phone consultation, check the site for the nearest in-person tax support, or possibly even drop off your taxes to pick up later through the VITA program. Goodbye, excuses!

Fear isn’t really an emotion I experience anymore after getting help from Military OneSource, especially since this Department of Defense service guarantees 100 percent accuracy – or the tax software vendor will reimburse me (and you!) up to $10,000. No matter what, I’m covered.

So while there are plenty of tax prep services out there, I finally gave in and picked the one that’s designed uniquely for me and my family, with help for the special situations military families like mine deal with each year. Add in the security and convenience (and it’s free!), it really seems like you can’t go wrong. And this year, I didn’t. Ah, sweet relief!

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