The Internal Revenue Service is promoting its IRS Free File for most taxpayers to begin using early even though the 2020 tax filing season officially begins on Jan. 27.
“Taxpayers who had an adjusted gross income of $69,000 or less for 2019 can do their taxes now, and the Free File provider will submit the return for processing once the filing season starts on Jan. 27,” Clay Sanford, an IRS spokesman said in a news release from the Internal Revenue Service.
Free File is a public-private partnership between the IRS and Free File Inc. (FFI), a consortium of tax software providers who make their Free File products available at IRS.gov/FreeFile.
Free File providers also offer state tax return preparation, some for free and some for a fee.
“With Free File, you can even use any digital device, personal computer, tablet or smart phone. Free File products are mobile enabled so you can do your taxes on your smart phone or tablet and e-File with your hand-held device,” according to the release.
The IRS also offers Free File Fillable Forms, which is the electronic version of IRS paper forms to any taxpayer. That product will be available Jan. 27. Free File Fillable Forms is best for taxpayers who are comfortable doing their own taxes with little assistance. Free File online products will be available from January through October for extension filers. Taxpayers who cannot meet the April 15 deadline, also can use Free File to file extensions.
Sanford said taxpayers wanting more personal help can visit one of thousands of community volunteer sites through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program or Tax Counseling for the Elderly offered by AARP. Trained volunteers will prepare returns for free for taxpayers who generally made $56,000 or less.
People using mobile phones or tablets to do their taxes can either go directly to IRS.gov/FreeFile or they can use the IRS2Go app and select “Free Tax Help” to find information on Free File and the VITA locator tool.