NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Visit most any tax prep office and you're likely to find a full parking lot. Tax season is definitely underway.
Tax preparer Martha Green will have words with her daughter tonight for volunteering her for an interview.
From the central office the daughter said Mom's branch office isn't that busy. Well after a lengthy wait for Green to do her job, she said business has kept her swamped since late last week.
"January 29 when we started, when the IRS started accepting the returns," said Green, a branch manager and tax preparer at Liberty Tax.
The intention is not to start a family disagreement, but to illustrate people start early in filing their taxes, particularly when a refund is in order.
"Most of our customers this time of the year is the lower income," Green said. "They come first because they feel the need, you know, that they need their money right away."
Before any client signs the dotted line, Green is making sure they have health insurance.
"Because if you don't have insurance, didn't have insurance for less than three months of the year you are going to get fined $325 or 3 percent of your income," Green said.
Green added a reminder that penalties go up even more for the 2017 tax year.
"They're definitely paying attention to the insurance, and we do sign people up for insurance as well," Green said.
Taxes and insurance create a busy workload for Green and her staff.
"It's non-stop until about 7, 7:30," Green said.
Green is sure to remind her daughter of that fact.
And here are some quick facts about the 2016 tax season.
More than 150 million federal income tax returns are expected to be filed this year. Seventy-percent of taxpayers will receive tax refunds this year. The average refund is expected to be about $2,800.
E-file and direct deposit are encouraged.
People will have several extra days to file. Taxpayers have until Monday, April 18, to file because the Emancipation Day holiday falls on Friday, April 15.
And if you need free help, AARP volunteers will provide free tax help at the Nacogdoches library every Monday through April 11 from 9:15 a.m. to noon.