Should you do your own taxes or hire the job out?
It's not what you know that's important here. It's what you don't know … or, more to the point, what you think you know and really don't.
If you have a simple return, you might consider e-filing or using a simple tax program. But remember, you're not hiring a tax pro just to put numbers in boxes. Any monkey can do that. Video: Schnepper's advice
Before we get any deeper into this, a disclosure: I have two law degrees, and I'm licensed by the New Jersey Board of Certified Public Accountants. I make a lot of money as a tax preparer. I have a vested interest.
To help you decide whether to do your own taxes, I offer three questions that can help you frame the issue:
1. Are you prepared to give your taxes your time?
According to the IRS, if you filed the regular 1040 last year, itemized your deductions and had some investment income and capital gains, it took you 37.8 hours to do your own return, even if you used tax