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Tax Seminar: Teaching tax facts

Paying close attention

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Kathryn Verble, a 35th Communications Squadron client systems technician, listens during a tax seminar at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 28, 2019. The event focused on accessing Military One Source, MilTax and the Armed Forces tax guide. Financial stability decreases stress and helps Airmen focus on the mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Xiomara M. Martinez)

Learning the tax sites

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Tommi Jones, left, and Airman 1st Class Jessica Carino, right, both 35th Security Forces Squadron installation entry controllers, access MilTax on a computer during a tax seminar at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 28, 2019. The event focused on accessing Military One Source, MilTax and the Armed Forces tax guide and providing prominent information and resources to Misawa members aiding them in properly executing their taxes. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Xiomara M. Martinez)

MilTax guide

Attendees await further instruction during a tax seminar at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 28, 2019. Team Misawa members used laptops and registered with MilTax and began the process of filing their taxes while at the seminar. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Xiomara M. Martinez)

What is required

U.S. Air Force Capt. Courtney Marshall, the 35th Fighter Wing legal office chief of international law, teaches how to work through MilTax during a tax seminar at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 28, 2019. Providing prominent information and resources to Misawa members aiding them in properly executing taxes. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Xiomara M. Martinez)

Tax seminar tactics

U.S. Air Force Capt. Courtney Marshall, the 35th Fighter Wing legal office chief of international law, shows a military tax cheat sheet during a tax seminar at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 28, 2019. The seminar gave guidance on step-by-step procedures of tax filing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Xiomara M. Martinez)

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- The 35th Fighter Wing legal office hosted its first tax seminar at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 21.

The tax seminar was a one-hour workshop aimed at providing military members, their dependents, and other Department of Defense civilians at Misawa AB with basic tax information, pamphlets and quality resources to assist them in filing their 2018 tax returns.

The legal office will continue to host tax seminars every Thursday at the Airman and Family Readiness Center until Apr. 15 from noon to 1 p.m.

“The tax seminars were created to give guidance to individuals at Misawa AB that may not know where to receive help or answers to their tax questions,” said Capt. Courtney Marshall, the 35th Fighter Wing legal office chief of international law and tax liaison.

Marshall led the tax seminar and provided an overview of basic tax terminology, special tax considerations from military families, and the necessary documentation they needed to file. She also outlined the recent tax law changes that came into effect on Jan. 1, 2019 and how they may affect each individual’s tax liability.

During the seminar, attendees were issued laptops to register with MilitaryOneSource’s free tax e-filing program, MilTax, and many were able to start the process of the filing their taxes immediately.

Attendees with more specific tax questions were directed to call the Legal Office to schedule a legal assistance appointment with Marshall.

“This class taught me valuable information I can apply to filing my taxes,” said Senior Airman Ravyn Lowe, a 35th Force Support Squadron fitness specialist. “I have a better understanding on the different processes and categories I can actually claim. I am no longer nervous for tax season.”

Marshall believes classes like this are useful for first time tax filers to make their experience less daunting.

“The tax seminars are particularly useful for first time tax filers because they are designed to demystify the process and make the experience less daunting,” described Marshall. “They allay the fears of those individuals, like me, that may have initially attempted to read the IRS website and panicked.”