What is the best way to file my taxes?

The best way to file your tax return is electronically, and you should do so as soon as possible. It will allow you to get your refund quickly and can help prevent identity theft. IRS Free File allows you to prepare and file your federal income tax online using guided tax preparation, on a partner IRS site, or on fillable Free File forms. It's safe, easy, and at no cost for you to file a federal return.

The factors that influence whether or not you need to file taxes will depend on your type of income (whether on your own account, through your employer, or through investments) and on the amount, tax status, age, and other factors. This non-profit public-private partnership is dedicated to helping millions of people prepare and file their federal taxes online for free. Companies associated with Free File cannot disclose or use tax return information for purposes other than preparing tax returns without your informed and voluntary consent. Many taxpayers with relatively simple returns tend to pay hundreds of dollars to file their taxes through national tax preparation companies, says Nell Curtis, an accounting instructor at the Milwaukee Area Technical School in Wisconsin.

Free tax software programs vary in their limitations, sets of features, and ability to file state tax returns for free. IRS Free File partners are online tax preparation companies that offer what is called the “IRS Free File program,” which provides free electronic tax preparation and the filing of federal tax returns at no cost to eligible taxpayers (some may also offer free state returns). There are many different ways to file your taxes for free, but these options are often reserved for people who don't have certain income thresholds or simpler tax returns. Online tax preparation software partners are part of the Free File Alliance, which coordinates with the IRS to provide you with electronic federal tax preparation and filing for free.

If you want to recover some of the excess money withheld by your employer, you'll have to file a tax return so that a tax refund can be issued for the money owed to you. The IRS Free File Program is a public-private partnership between the IRS and many companies in the tax preparation and filing software industry that offer their tax preparation and filing online for free. You can file your return electronically directly with the IRS by preparing your own taxes on digital forms or using tax software after you have filed your return. If you meet certain requirements, you can file your taxes for free using online software programs or receive direct help from tax professionals who volunteer through an IRS-sponsored program.

The IRS Free File program is a public-private partnership (PPP) between the IRS and the Free File Alliance, a coalition of leading companies in tax preparation software. In addition to free government programs for low-income taxpayers and English language students, several commercial online tax software programs will allow you to file your federal tax return at no cost.

Eva Dougherty
Eva Dougherty

Lifelong baconaholic. Webaholic. Professional bacon guru. Evil travelaholic. Total tv lover.

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