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FOX43 Finds Out: When you should hire an accountant to help file your tax return

YORK, York County -- It`s time to search for receipts and dig out all your favorite tax paperwork.

With filing season just a few days away, there`s a big decision to make - do you hire an accountant or do you tackle the numbers by yourself.

That really depends on your comfort level.

"If you have the time to spend to go over everything and understand everything, then you can try to handle it on your own," said Sean Clark from York Independents, INC.

He says if you have a simple tax situation like no dependents, no investments, no contributions to charity and if you don`t own a business - file away!

However, if you`ve made some big changes this year the financial expert in York says a CPA may be the way to go.

"If you've bought a house, sold a house, had a baby, did a move."

That`s because those filings can get a big tricky.

Plus, tax codes can change a lot from one year to the next.

"There's a lot of ambiguity and there's a lot of complexity in the tax code, and again a tax professional, that's what they've made their whole career doing," said Clark.

CPA David Welber in York knows all about tricky tax codes.

He`s been an accountant for 40 years.

Welber says it`s the wording that can trip you up.

Take moving expenses for example, when can you use it as a deduction gets complicated..

Welber said, "If your new job is 50 miles or more further from your old home than your old home was from your old job. You got that?"

Those itemized deductions are the things that may make you pull your hair out if your filing on your own.

Welber says you can always try, but it might be a good idea to check with a CPA first.

Because Even tax codes you think you can a grip on can change from year to year.

"Even with dividends, they have gotten complicated because there are so many different classifications now of dividends."

Here are some changes you should be aware of this year.

You might be waiting a bit longer than normal for this year`s tax return.

The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015, or PATH, goes into effect for this year.

That's supposed to protect people and businesses against tax fraud.

It also means, some people might not be getting a return until the end of february - at the earliest.

Also, the penalty for not have healthcare coverage under the affordable care act is going up.

The average is $695 per adult and $347.50 per child if you went without healthcare in 2016.

Experts say whether you`re filling yourself or with a CPA, just make sure you know what you`re submitting is accurate.

Welber said, "I've seen people getting into trouble when they try to do somethings themselves simply because they didn't know."

We also found some odd things that are tax deductible according to Turbotax.

For instance, clarinet lessons for kids with overbites are tax deductible thanks to a 1962 provision.

However, you would have to prove that the lessons are for the dental problem.

Also, if you're looking to kick smoking, you may be able to deduct the cost of nicotine patches or other aides.

If you want to file your own taxes, here are some links with information: Personal income PA tax formsPersonal income tax guide and how to find out if you can file for free online.