2013-02-06 / Local & State

Let Free File Do The Hard Work For You

Taxes can be taxing. But, you don’t have to be a tax expert to prepare your federal tax return. Using IRS Free File, you can prepare and efile your federal taxes on brand-name software for free. The program is a partnership between the IRS and the Free File Alliance, a group of about 15 privatesector tax software companies.

All Free File software companies use the latest encryption software. More than 36 million taxpayers used Free File safely and securely since 2003. Free File is not only safe and secure, but using Free File’s e-file option and direct deposit is the fastest way to get a refund.

Here are four tips about IRS Free File:

Access IRS.gov. To avoid any charges for preparing or e-filing your federal tax return, you must access Free File through the IRS.gov Web site. Once you choose a Free File company, you will be directed to their Web site to prepare, print and e-file your return.

Taxes simplified. Free File software’s question and answer format will help you find tax breaks, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit. The software selects the appropriate tax form and does the calculations for you.

Free options for all. People who make $57,000 or less, which includes most Americans, can use the Free File brand-name software. People who earn more can use Free File Fillable Forms, an electronic version of IRS paper forms.

Free extensions. Taxpayers who cannot complete their tax returns by the April 15 filing deadline can request a six-month extension. It’s free and easy. Remember, though, that this is an extension of time to file, not to pay. If you think you owe, complete the estimated payment section and submit your payment with your extension request to avoid penalties and interest.

Free File. It’s Fast. It’s Safe. It’s Free. For more information, visit IRS.gov/freefile.

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