Where to file tax returns for free: 10 options
Want to file your taxes for free? Depending on how much money you make and other factors, you might have several choices for free filing online or in-person with volunteer help.
Here are 10 providers of free tax filing:
1. IRS FreeFile – Depending on income, you can use one of two options. If you make less than $64,000 adjusted gross income (AGI), the IRS FreeFile site will help match you to a company that will allow you to use its software for free to file your federal taxes. However, depending on the company, there might be a charge to file state taxes, or state tax filing might not be offered. Or, anyone of any income level can use Free File Fillable Forms, which are online versions of paper IRS tax forms, to file federal taxes.
2. VITA and TCE Programs – The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free in-person tax help for taxpayers who make $54,000 or less per year, along with disabled filers and those who speak limited English. The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program offers volunteer help to taxpayers 60 and older, and it specializes in pension, retirement and other senior tax issues. Most TCE sites are operated by the AARP Foundation's Tax-Aide program.
3. TurboTax Federal Free Edition – TurboTax offers free federal tax filing for filers using IRS Form 1040EZ or Form 1040A, which are simplified versions of Form 1040, through the TurboTax Federal Free Edition. While federal filing is free, TurboTax charges $29.99 per state to file state taxes.
4. FreeTaxUSA – At FreeTaxUSA.com, anyone can file a federal return online for free, but filing a state return costs $12.95. There are no restrictions on income or age to use the service. If you choose, you can upgrade to the deluxe version with priority support and audit assist for $6.99.
5. TaxHawk – Anyone can file federal income taxes for free using TaxHawk. However, state returns cost $18.99 each (or $14.99 each for prior year state returns). For 2016 taxes, TaxHawk is offering free filing of one state return to new customers. For the offer, a new customer is defined as a taxpayer who has not filed a return using TaxHawk since Jan. 1, 2013.
6. TaxAct.com – This service provides free simple federal and state return filing for any filers using Form1040A or Form 1040EZ. The optional import of your prior year tax return costs $10, and there are additional charges for complex and self-employed or small-business forms.
7. TaxSlayer.com – If you qualify to use Form 1040EZ, you can use TaxSlayer at no cost to file your federal returns and state returns.
8. eSmart Tax – Use Liberty Tax Service to file a basic 1040EZ federal return for free or a state return for $31.95.
9. H&R Block More Zero – H&R Block offers free federal tax filing and state tax filing for consumers using Forms 1040EZ, 1040A and 1040, including those who itemize deductions.
10. 1040.com – This site offers free federal 1040EZ filing for simple tax situations, including single or married taxpayers with no dependents, and taxable income under $100,000. There is a charge of $9.95 to file state taxes. Taxpayers with slightly more complicated situations pay $19.95 for federal filing and $14.95 for state filing. Taxpayers who own a small business or make more than six figures pay $39.95 for federal and $19.95 for state filing.
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