ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – There are eight tax services that participate in the IRS’s Free File program allowing people who make up to $73,000 to e-file their taxes for free. Depending on where in the country people live, if they are planning to file state taxes, not all the eight programs allow people to file both federal and state taxes.
Three options exist for New Yorkers who file federal and state returns: OnLine Taxes (OLT), TaxAct, and FreeTaxUSA, according to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the New York State Department of Tax and Finance (NYSDTF). Still, each of the services has its own limitations. Below are the guidelines for each:
|Service||Adjusted Gross Income (AGI)||Age||Earned Income Tax Credit||Military Pay|
|OLT||$16-$73K||All||Yes, if AGI criterion is met.||Yes|
|TaxAct||Up to $65K (Active military up to $73K)||Up to 56-years-old||Yes, if AGI criterion is met.||Yes|
|FreeTaxUSA||Up to $41K||All||Yes, if AGI criterion is met.||Yes|
The NYSDTF said tax season opens on January 24 but companies offering free tax services could make software available as early as Jan. 14. They have a list of documents New Yorkers will need to file their taxes online and videos to help people choose the service that’s right for them.
Turbo Tax has opted not to participate in the IRS’s Free File program, but they do have a few free filing options for people who file simple returns. Turbo Tax users who prepare their own taxes must file by Feb. 15 and users who have their taxes prepared by a Turbo Tax professional must by Mar. 31.
Last year tax refunds were heavily delayed as the IRS struggled to process returns. Many Capital Region tax preparers said it was the first time they had seen such significant delays despite customers filing early. Getting a hold of the IRS was also a problem as weeks went by after the filing deadline.
A similar situation could be seen again this year as omicron spreads through the U.S. Last week IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said people should e-file taxes to prevent delays and sign up for direct deposit for refunds, according to The Associated Press and Nexstar Media Wire.