By Nancy Mathis, Internal Revenue Service
Looking for a simple way to do your taxes? Trying to save time and money? The answer is Free File, and it’s available only at www.irs.gov/freefile.
There is a Free File option for everyone. Free File offers brand-name tax software to people who earned $57,000 or less last year, which is 70 percent of us. For people who earned more, there are free online fillable forms.
This program is a part of a public-private partnership between the Internal Revenue Service and 15 leading tax software companies that have agreed to make their products available to the public for free.
Here’s how to get started:
Step 1: Gather your tax materialsHere’s some of what you will need:
- A copy of last year’s tax return
- Valid social security numbers for yourself, your spouse and children
- All income statements such as your Form W-2
- Interest/dividend statements, such as the 1099 forms
- Documents for any tax deductions or credits
Step 2: Choose a Free File optionDo your taxes with either Free File software or online fillable forms. Because there are 15 participating companies, each offering slightly different rules for qualifying, it’s easiest to select “Help Me Choose A Company.” This tool will help you select a software option right for you.
Step 3: Prepare and e-file your returnYou can prepare, print and e-file your federal return all for free. Some companies also offer state tax returns for free or for a fee. Using electronic filing and direct deposit remain the fastest way to get your federal refund. The IRS also has upgraded “Where’s My Refund?” so you can start tracking your refund after 24 hours.
Free File is available at www.irs.gov/freefile around the clock, giving you the freedom to choose when and how you do your taxes.