Video: What are Tax Laws?
Hello, I'm Sarah from TurboTax, with some information about the laws that affect your income taxes. You know all those instructions you've spent countless hours reading at tax time. Well, every word you read is based on a law that Congress or your state legislature has passed.
When dealing with federal tax laws, the Internal Revenue Code is the ultimate authority. Every provision has been voted on by the U.S. Congress at one time or another but often times these code sections are somewhat vague and don't offer much help when preparing your tax return. This is where the Treasury Department comes in. When necessary, this agency publishes regulations that elaborate on individual code sections. If you take a look at one of these, you will see that it provides much more information with real life examples.
Even though there is a lot of tax law out there that you can read, the reality is it's not necessary for you to do so. The IRS does a good job of explaining what you need to know in various types of publications including the instructions to your tax return. And because tax laws can change each year the IRS updates these publications on a regular basis. Keep in mind though that these laws only apply to federal taxes. Each state has its own tax laws that its residents must follow. And remember if you use TurboTax to prepare your return you can be sure it's up to date with all the latest tax laws. We'll just ask you simple questions and fill in all the right forms for you.