Major changes to state tax laws take effect Jan. 1

by: Sarah Rosario Updated:

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NORTH CAROLINA - Eyewitness News took a look at North Carolina laws that impact you the most and what it could mean to your wallet.

For accountant Rashad Phillips the start of a new year means a rush from clients eager to file tax returns hoping  to get money back.

"This is the busiest time of the year,” he said.

This year he said several people have come to him concerned about the new tax laws which go into effect Jan 1.

He said they are worried about how it will affect their paychecks and tax returns

"It depends on their income level, but people have questions about their withholdings they're very confused about that," said Phillips.

Channel 9 reported about the tax reform package passed into law this summer.

All taxpayers will now pay the same 5.8 percent income tax rate instead of the three-tiered system where the highest earners paid more at 7.75 percent. 

Here's how it breaks down, according to the State Fiscal Research Division, a married couple with two children making $20,000 a year will go from receiving a $222 tax rebate in 2013 to owing $40 next year. While, a married couple with two children making $250,000 will get a $2,318 tax cut in 2014,

Some of the major tax law changes include the elimination of deductions for severance pay. Also eliminated are tax credits for child care, education expenses, the permanently disabled and charitable contributions for those who don't itemize their deductions.

Taxpayers we spoke to said it hurts the working class and working poor. They want lawmakers to reconsider the laws next session but aren't confident anything will change.

 "I don't think they care about the people anymore. They quite caring about people,” said Sheryl Dalbora. 

For taxpayers wanting file on their own this tax season, Philips said it may be best to hire a professional.

"They may want to consider hiring a tax professional and experienced one who they interviewed because that's the key thing

State lawmakers say the tax changes will simplify return, create jobs and keep more money in your wallet.

For a full  list of the key changes to tax laws, click here.