Speed Reads

Womp womp

This new tax form is the size of a postcard — but only because it leaves out important stuff

The Republican tax reform plan has accomplished one of President Trump's fondest dreams: development of a tax form the size of a postcard. But there's a catch: Our income tax system is still super complicated, so the postcard is small not because the process has been simplified but because it leaves out important details.

For example, it includes a line for the expanded child tax credit but excludes other child care costs. Particularly confusing is a line which requires taxpayers to consult one of six accompanying worksheets, find and tally a number of popular deductions, and then come back to the postcard to enter the result.

For the 9 in 10 taxpayers who file online, this change will be irrelevant. However, if the postcard prompts those with relatively simple tax situations to send in hard copies, the IRS will struggle to handle the new influx of paperwork which electronic filing presently eliminates.

See a side-by-side comparison of the old and new forms, plus images of the many accompanying worksheets, at The New York Times — or watch below as Trump bestows the postcard with a kiss. Bonnie Kristian