Earned Income

Money or other compensation given to you for working, whether you receive a paycheck or you are self-employed and pay yourself.

Earned Income Credit (EIC)

A refundable tax credit targeted at workers who make low to moderate incomes. Refer to the earned income credit.


To electronically file a tax return. To file your taxes online.


Employer Identification Number, used by employees to identify their employers to the IRS.


For tax purposes, a person is considered elderly if they are age 65 or older on the last day of the tax year.

Electronic Filing

Filing your tax return online, also known as efiling or e-filing. This is generally more secure, more accurate, and faster than filing your taxes by paper through the mail.

Employment Tax

Also called a payroll tax. A tax paid by employers for FICA and FUTA.


A person or group of people that pays taxes. Types of tax entities include individuals, businesses, estates, trusts, and charitable organizations.


A tax entity that receives and reports a person's income and pays taxes after that person's death.

Estate Tax

A tax, targeted at the wealthy, on the total value of an estate if it exceeds a certain amount.

Estimated Tax

Quarterly down-payments toward your annual tax bill, required if you expect to make more than a certain amount of income for the year ($1,000 in 2010) and if your income taxes are not covered by withholding.


Another term for audit.

Excise Tax

A special tax on using or selling certain products or services. One example of excise taxes is luxury taxes .


A type of deduction claimed for yourself, your spouse (if filing jointly), and each your dependents. Personal and dependency exemptions are worth $3,650 each in 2010.


A tax extension, obtained by filing or efiling Form 4868, will delay your filing deadline by 3 months. Note that this extends your time to file, but not your time to pay, and interest and penalties may apply to any late tax payments.