Work and Taxes
Most families have one or more family members working. If you or a loved one loses a job, you'll need resources to assess your current situation and try to make the best use of the money you have. Understanding how taxes work and maximizing tax credits is one strategy for saving more of the income you earn throughout the year.
The following resources will help you find options when income changes, and better understand taxes and tax credits.
Flexible Savings Account (FSA) for Health Care Rules (audio; 1:58) — Be in the know about what your health care insurance plans covers. Transcript
Adjusting to Suddenly Reduced Income (9.9 MB PDF) — Take into account both the emotional and financial aspects of sudden income loss.
Action Page 3-4: Spending Plan — Short Form — Budgeting can help a bad situation from getting worse. Use this form to track your income and expenses. From Dollar Works 2.
Adult Children's Knowledge of Retired Parent's Income (audio; 1:52) — How much adult children know about the income and expenses of their retired parents can be an important issue when health changes requires caregiving. Transcript
Federal Poverty Guidelines (2012) (200 KB PDF) — Dollar Works 2 Action Page 3-6 — This easy-to-use chart helps you see if you qualify for any federal or state assistance programs based on your income level and household size.
Tax Benefits for Higher Education (audio; 2:10) — Tax benefits can be used to get back some of the money spent on tuition, loan interest paid or to maximize savings for future college expenses. Transcript
College Student Children and Earned Income Credit (audio; 1:33) — A child who is a full-time student and still a dependent on their parents’ tax return can be claimed for the Earned Income Credit until age 24. Transcript
IRS Offer in Compromise: Dealing with the IRS (audio; 1:55) — The IRS does have some options available to help people with their tax obligations due to unemployment or other financial problems. Transcript
Free Tax Preparation — Qualifying Minnesota indiiduals can get taxes prepared for free throughout the year.
Tax Refund Decisions (436 K PDF) — Use Dollar Works 2 Action Pages to help you make decisions about maximizing your tax refund.
Tax Credit Primer for Social Service Providers (377 K PDF) — Handbook used in the 2013 training for professionals about tax credits, free tax preparation sites, and tax reduction resources. You may also be interested in the recorded Tax Credit Training for Social Service Staff.
Other Recommended Resources
Deciding if Teens Should Work — Weigh the pros and cons of whether your teen should work when the family falls on hard financial times.
Families in Tough Times — Resources for families who are experiencing, avoiding, or recovering from tough times. Materials for farm families, stress, disaster recovery, and more.
Dollar Works 2 — Teach others how to manage their personal finances and make sound decision about money. This comprehensive curriculum has a unit on Understanding a Pay Statement and Taxes.
Tax Topic Index — United States Department of Internal Revenue Service — Answers to common questions; includes individual and business tax information.