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  • Writer's pictureBrian A. Raphan, Esq.

Free Tax Help & Filing for Low- and Middle-Income Taxpayers

The United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is sponsoring the largest free tax counseling and preparation program in the country, available through AARP.

As seen in:

Who Can Use this Free Tax Help and Free Filing Service?

Most people who work need to file a tax return. AARP Tax-Aide is a free tax help service for people who meet the following criteria:

  1. Low- or middle-income taxpayers who want tax help and free filing of their U.S. federal income tax returns

  2. You must have a simple tax return. People seeking tax help who have more complex returns will be advised to get professional tax assistance.

  3. You do not need to be a member of AARP or a senior to receive tax help from Tax-Aide, however special attention is paid to people age 60 and over.

What Are the Details of This Free Tax Help and Filing Service? Every year, from February 1st through April 15th, about 32,000 trained and certified Tax-Aide volunteers across the country are available to provide tax help for preparing and filing your federal tax return.

  1. Many Tax-Aide locations are equipped to file your return electronically, allowing you to receive your tax refund much faster.

  2. Some Tax-Aide locations offer bilingual assistance.

  3. In most situations, you must visit an AARP Tax-Aide site in person to have your tax returns prepared by Tax-Aide volunteers. However, special arrangements can be made to assist shut-ins and homebound disabled persons by providing tax help at locations including hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, etc. To make a special tax help request, contact AARP at[/Email”>.

  4. Volunteers are not available to provide tax help by phone, so visit the online tax counseling site for a list of frequently asked questions or to submit your own questions.

  5. What Do I Need to Bring When I Receive Free Tax Help?

  6. Photo identification

  7. Social Security card

  8. Wage and earning statements

  9. Interest and dividend statements

  10. A copy of last year’s federal and state returns if available

  11. Your bank account and bank routing numbers so you can arrange for direct deposit of your tax refund

  12. Where Can I Find the Closest Tax-Aide Site?

  13. Call toll-free: 1.888.AARPNOW (1.888.227.7669)

  14. Go online to locate an AARP Tax-Aide site near you

What If There’s No Tax-Aide Site Near Me? If you cannot find a Tax-Aide location near you, the IRS offers other tax help options. For more information:

  1. Call the IRS toll-free at 1-800 829-1040

  2. Find your state’s Taxpayer Assistance Office

  3. You can also prepare and file free tax returns electronically, as long as your adjusted gross income is less than $50,000 per year.


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