By WVUA 23 Reporter Kayla Smith

As tax season approaches, tax professionals recommend you formulate a plan for filing your returns.

Remember, the sooner you file, the sooner you’ll get your refund.

The IRS typically issues refunds for electric filers within three weeks. If you file a paper return, it can take about twice as long for a refund.

The process begins when you receive your W-2 form, which usually arrives by the end of January.

Once you have that form in hand, it’s a good idea to go ahead and get started.

Tax professionals say document organization is crucial when you’re preparing to file.

“Make sure that you are prepared when you come into the tax office,” said owner of Carter Tax and Financial Services Sherry Carter. “Make sure that all of the documents have been received and that you leave off absolutely nothing.”

You will need to gather information including your social security number, W-2 form, any 1099 forms and records of your yearly medical, educational and charitable expenses.

Filing your taxes is a complicated process, and if you have questions or concerns it’s a good idea to consult a tax professional.

“The tax laws have changed tremendously this year,” Carter said. “There might be a lot of deductions that you don’t know about that you’re trying to do those taxes online by yourself, so come consult a tax professional to see if they can help you a little bit further with those taxes.”

Keep in mind that the IRS charges a late-filing penalty if you don’t file your tax returns on time.

The IRS will begin accepting returns for 2019 on Monday.

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