Helpful Tools for This Tax Season

Helpful Tools for This Tax Season

Monday, January 29, 2018

Michigan Legal Help would like to wish you a Happy New Year! The end of January is already here, which means it’s Tax Filing Season. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will start accepting tax returns on Monday, January 29th. Taxes are due on Tuesday, April 17th. Michigan Legal Help would like to tell you about some great resources that may help you prepare and file your taxes. You might even be able to file your taxes for free.

Free File

Free File is a free, federal tax-filing software offered by the IRS. You must have an income lower than $66,000 to use it. You’ll also need an email address, a copy of last year’s tax return, and documents for your income and tax deductions. The tool also allows you to e-file and receive your refund by direct deposit. According to the IRS, this is the fastest method of receiving your refund. Get started on the IRS website.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is a program that helps people prepare their taxes and in some cases, e-file them, all for free. The volunteers that will help you are IRS-certified. To use the program your income must be less than $54,000. You may also be eligible if you have a disability or are not a fluent speaker of English. Find the VITA site closest to you online or call 800-906-9887.

Tax Counseling for the Elderly

Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) is another program that offers free help with preparing and filing taxes. This program is run by IRS-certified volunteers as well. To be eligible you must be 60 years of age or older. The volunteers will help you with tax questions related to retirement, pensions, and other information specific to seniors. Find the closest TCE site on the IRS website or the AARP website. You may also call 800-906-9887 or 888-227-7669.

Earned Income Tax Credit

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a refundable income tax credit. Refundable tax credits reduce the amount of income taxes you owe. If you qualify for one, it could result in a refund. Please read the article “Meet the Earned Income Tax Credit” to learn more.

Other Resources

Here are some other IRS resources you may find helpful:

Here are some more of our own resources that might be helpful:

Michigan Free Tax Help is another resource that has tips on preparing and filing taxes. They also have advice on important tax refunds and free tax assistance. Finally, looking for a reason to put some of your refund into savings? Save Your Refund is an organization that holds sweepstakes for people who save their tax refund. You can enter for saving as little as $50 of your refund. You can enter to win a $100 prize and a $10,000 grand prize.