5 Ways To File Your Taxes For Free

Credits to the đŸ‘‰đŸŸSource LinkđŸ‘‰đŸŸ Kimberly Wilson
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5 Ways To File Your Taxes For Free

Black woman, budget and home finance on laptop for accounting, money planning and fintech investment. Paper bills, savings and web payment review, online banking and insurance loan of financial taxes

Paying taxes all year long is pricey enough. The last thing anyone needs is an additional financial hit when processing those hard-earned dollars. Fortunately, there are some alternatives that won’t strain your wallet, and exploring cost-effective options doesn’t mean sacrificing quality. 

Whether tapping into community resources or embracing the convenience of online platforms, programs such as the IRS Free File, which offers eligible taxpayers secure access to free tax software from reputable partners; the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, providing free tax assistance and basic income tax return preparation through IRS-certified volunteers; Military OneSource, designed for service members and qualified family members; and the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program for individuals aged 60 or older have proven to be legitimate and trusted avenues, designed to cater to various needs.

Opting for these cost-effective or free tax filing alternatives ensures a seamless and reliable tax filing experience without hefty price tags. To empower you this tax season, here are five clear and cost-effective options to navigate the tax filing process without breaking the bank.

IRS Free File:

The IRS Free File program is now open for the 2024 filing season, offering eligible taxpayers free tax software from trusted partners. This program ensures the secure handling of taxpayer information and supports mobile file access via smartphones or tablets.

Who is Eligible for IRS Free File? Eligibility, determined by providers based on age, income, and state residency, caters to individuals with an adjusted gross income (AGI) of $79,000 or less in 2023. Free state tax return preparation is included, and those exceeding the AGI limit can use Free File Fillable Forms.

How to File:Participating providers, such as 1040Now, Drake (1040.com), ezTaxReturn.com, FileYourTaxes.com, Online Taxes, TaxAct, TaxHawk (FreeTaxUSA), and TaxSlayer, offer various options. Explore available offers on the IRS Free File webpage.

Online Free File Software:

Several trustworthy tax software providers, including TurboTax Free Edition, H&R Block Free Online, and TaxAct Free Edition, offer free versions designed for straightforward tax returns. Before proceeding, ensure that you meet the specific eligibility criteria for free filing with these platforms.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA): 

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program provides free tax assistance and basic income tax return preparation through IRS-certified volunteers. Services are available at community and neighborhood centers, libraries, schools, shopping malls, and other convenient locations.

Who is eligible for VITA? VITA is designed for individuals earning $60,000 or less, with eligibility extending to those with disabilities, facing language barriers, or qualifying as senior citizens.

How to Apply: No application is required. For additional information, visit the Free Tax Return Preparation for Qualifying Taxpayers or call 1-800-906-9887.

Military OneSource Free Software & Support:

MilTax provides military members free tax software and personalized assistance from military tax experts. Developed by the Defense Department and accessible through Military OneSource, MilTax is tailored to handle complex situations like deployment, combat pay, housing, multistate filings, and overseas living (OCONUS).

Who is eligible for MilTax? MilTax e-filing software is free for service members, qualified family members, and survivors. Starting this year, eligibility requires verification through the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS).

How to Apply: Visit the MilTax Free Software & Support page to confirm eligibility and get started. For in-person assistance, locate an IRS VITA location near you. 

Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE): 

The TCE program provides crucial free tax assistance to individuals aged 60 or older, offering on-site counseling at convenient locations. While the primary period for free tax filing is from January 1 to April 15, TCE ensures year-round activities to guarantee accessible and quality assistance.

Who is eligible for TCE? Individuals aged 60 or older are eligible for TCE services.

How to Apply: Locate the nearest TCE site effortlessly using the TCE Locator Tool.

Be aware that service eligibility criteria are subject to change, so stay updated with information from the IRS or relevant tax authorities. Exercise caution for fees that might apply to specific services or situations not covered by these free options. Additionally, many states offer free filing options. To file your state income tax for free, check your state’s Department of Revenue or Taxation website. 

There are multiple avenues and resources to help taxpayers navigate the tax filing process seamlessly without straining finances. Be sure to stay informed about service eligibility criteria for the resources provided above, exercise caution regarding potential fees, and remember to explore state-specific options for free filing. And, as always, check with the IRS or relevant tax authorities for the latest updates.

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