Channel Islands Tax Advocates, Inc.
Channel Islands Tax Advocates, Inc.

We Keep You Up to Date


In this section of the page, you will find a list of useful links that can help you with some of your tax questions.


Tax Links:




Please note: Channel Islands Tax Advocates, Inc. is not responsible for the content of external websites. Following the links above implicitly constitutes acknowledgement and acceptance of this agreement.

Are you expecting a tax refund from the Internal Revenue Service this year? If so, click here to view the seven things you should know about checking the status of your refund once you have filed your federal tax return.


Visit this section of the page for regular updates on tax regulation and the latest developments.

2009 Tax Changes - Summarynew 

First-Time Home Buyer Credit - updated

Tax Tips for 2009 - updated

Consumer Alerts - updated

How to Spot a Scam and What to do

Preparing for a Natural Disaster

Tax Benefits for Job Seekers

Haiti Relief Donations

IRS Notices and Updates

Errors to Avoid at Tax Time (3/16/2010)

Errors made on tax returns may delay the processing of your tax return, which in turn, may cause your refund to arrive later. Here are nine common errors the IRS wants you to avoid to help guarantee your refund arrives on time.

  1. Incorrect or missing Social Security Numbers When entering SSNs for anyone listed on your tax return, be sure to enter them exactly as they appear on the Social Security cards.
  2. Incorrect or misspelling of dependent’s last name When entering a dependent’s last name on your tax return, ensure they are entered exactly as they appear on their Social Security card.
  3. Filing status errors Make sure you choose the correct filing status for your situation. There are five filing statuses: Single, Married Filing Jointly, Married Filing Separately, Head of Household, and Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child. See Publication 501, Exemptions, Standard Deduction, and Filing Information to determine the filing status that best fits your needs.
  4. Math errors When preparing paper returns, review all math for accuracy. Remember, when you file electronically, the software takes care of the math for you!
  5. Computation errors Take your time. Many taxpayers make mistakes when figuring their taxable income, withholding and estimated tax payments, Earned Income Tax Credit, Standard Deduction for age 65 or over or blind, the taxable amount of Social Security benefits, and the Child and Dependent Care Credit.
  6. Incorrect bank account numbers for Direct Deposit If you are due a refund and requested direct deposit, be sure to review the routing and account numbers for your financial institution.
  7. Forgetting to sign and date the return An unsigned tax return is like an unsigned check – it is invalid.
  8. Incorrect Adjusted Gross Income information Taxpayers filing electronically must sign the return electronically using a Personal Identification Number. To verify their identity, taxpayers will be prompted to enter their AGI from their originally filed 2008 federal income tax return or their prior year PIN if they used one to file electronically last year. Taxpayers should not use an AGI amount from an amended return, Form 1040X, or a math error correction made by IRS.
  9. Claiming the Making Work Pay Tax Credit Taxpayers with earned income should claim the Making Work Pay Tax Credit by attaching a Schedule M, Making Work Pay and Government Retiree Credits to their 2009 Form 1040 or 1040 A. Taxpayers who file Form 1040-EZ will use the worksheet for Line 8 on the back of the 1040-EZ to figure their Making Work Pay Tax Credit. The credit is worth up to $400 for individuals and $800 for married couples filing jointly. Many people who worked during 2009 are slowing down the processing of their tax return by not properly claiming this credit.

Redesigned Notices (1/11/2010)

The Internal Revenue Service today unveiled its first redesigned notices that are part of an on-going effort to improve the way it corresponds with taxpayers. The nine new notices (click here for a listing) are among the first to be reviewed and revised for clarity, effectiveness and efficiency.

The new format includes a plain language explanation of the nature of the correspondence, clearly states what action the taxpayer must take and presents a consistent, clean design. The new format also guides taxpayers to appropriate pages on where they can find accurate and relevant information quickly and easily.   

Still confused?  Let us help you weather the storm - give us a call at 805.497.6457


Franchise Tax Board (FTB) News and Updates

The following links provide some of the latest updates, announcements and news from the State of California Franchise Tax Board.

Please note: Channel Islands Tax Advocates, Inc. is not responsible for the content of external websites. Following the links above implicitly constitutes acknowledgement and acceptance of this agreement.