Changes You Need to Know About When Filing Your Taxes

Charlotte, N.C. (WJZY) -- This Tuesday officially marks the start of tax season. The IRS is now accepting personal and corporate tax returns.

Here are a few things you need to know.

At the top of the list this year - no matter what tax form you use, you'll see a new question. Did you have healthcare in 2014?

"You'll have to either indicate that you had health insurance in 2014 or if you did not have health insurance and met the requirement to not carry healthcare, you can claim an exemption from the healthcare law," said Charles Hardy with Span Enterprises in Rock Hill.

Depending on your income and a handful of other requirements, you wouldn't have to pay a penalty for not having healthcare. If you don't qualify and didn't have health insurance in 2014, you will have to pay up.

"They will be facing a penalty which can be $95.00 or 1% of their household income. That can be substantial. It's whichever one is greater," said Jania Foxx with H&R Block.

Second on the list of need to know items - if you're filing a state tax return in North Carolina, you'll see a lot less deductions.

"North Carolina has reduced or taken away a lot of deductions. All you can use as a personal deduction is your home interest and charitable donations," said Jair Devereaux with Span Enterprises.

That takes away a lot of deductions folks were used to seeing on their state tax return. For example,

"Job related deductions like teachers who bought supplies for school. You could deduct some aspects of your house like if you had a business there. All those deductions have been repealed," said Devereaux.

Another thing to keep in mind - you could be getting less money back in your North Carolina tax return because of the 5.75% flat tax rate.

"You used to get a refund because they took so much tax out. Now, what you paid is lower, so it's going to lower your refund," said Foxx.

In other words, you get less money back because you put less money into the system.

One more thing about your tax refund - tax experts say because the IRS is getting less money in its budget, you may be waiting even longer to see that refund check.

Other tax updates this year:

You can now contribute $500 more to your 401-K

Also, if you have employees, you need to file a 1099 or a W-2 for them by February 2nd.

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