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Nothing puts the fear into people more than the letters I-R-S. The Internal Revenue Service, otherwise known as the IRS, is the Federal Government’s agency charged with collecting taxes from individuals and businesses.
However, for most people the IRS is nothing to be afraid of. If you have only one or two W-2’s, in fact, you can use the IRS’ website to file your income tax return for free. The program walks you through the steps and it is easy to do, even if you have never filled out an income tax form before. Other programs and software are also available for purchase, download, or to use online. Many of these options also allow you to file your federal income taxes for free and can assist you with your state income taxes as well.
Use Free E-File to file your Federal Income Taxes
Beginning this year, you can now use the IRS’s Free E-File program to fill out your federal Income taxes. The program will walk you through the steps. Basically, you just type the information from your W-2’s into the program and answer questions about your dependents. It is that simple. Most state taxing authorities have similar programs that let you use the information from your Federal 1040 form to do the same thing. Just transfer information and submit it. The instructions are simple and you can rest assured that your information is submitted in a timely manner that will prevent you from paying costly fines and interest.
Use TurboTax to file your 1040 Income Taxes
TurboTax is one of the most popular software programs available to file your income taxes. The software is available nation-wide and is also available online to download. There is an online version as well. You have the option of transferring your information from your W-2’s and checking out your exact situation before you pay for the program. If you decide to use this option, you can save your electronic version to make it that much simpler to fill out next year’s income taxes. The program will let you file your Federal Income taxes for free and for a modest sum, Turbo Tax will assist you in submitting your state income taxes as well.
Other Programs Available to File Your 1040 Income Taxes online.
H&R Block, TaxAct, and TaxCut are as easy to use as TurboTax and are just some of the different software options that are available to taxpayers. Many offer free e-file and assistance to help you with your state income taxes as well.
In Person Options to File Your Federal Income Taxes:
Senior citizens and people with low income can qualify for free income tax preparation through a number of programs available throughout the United States. If you are not comfortable with using a computer, you might want to check into your local state options for filing your income taxes.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) can connect you with certified volunteers. If your income is below $49,000 this may be the program for you. Locate the nearest VITA site by calling 1-800-906-9887.
Tax counseling for the Elderly (TCE) also provides free tax help to tax payers over 60 years of age. To find out more about TCE call 1-800-829-1040.
Military personnel and their families can get free tax help as well. The Armed Forces Tax Council (AFTC) is available worldwide and is can help with special issues members of the armed forces may have.
With so many options available to taxpayers, you should file your Federal income taxes, even if you are not required to. In the past, refunds and stimulus payments have been made to those who file. If you do not file a 1040, you do not qualify for these extra benefits enjoyed by taxpayers.
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