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IRS Free File Program

Updated on February 7, 2011

IRS Free File

Americans tend to not enjoy preparing and filing taxes very much. To help make it easier for people, the IRS has had their free file program set up for a few years now.

Everyone hates doing their taxes, right? What's worse is if you have to pay an accountant or purchase tax preparation software to do it. But, you may not have to do either. About 70% of Americans can qualify for the IRS's free file program.

The IRS grew very tired of getting complaints from people regarding the filing of taxes. So, they created a program partnering with software companies to let people prepare and file their taxes for free. Companies such as Tax Pros and H&R Block participate in the free file program. To get to the program, you can go to the IRS web site and enter it from there. Do a search on the site for the free file program and it should come up. If you don't access the free file program you might end up having to pay.

Qualifying for Free File

You may be wondering, who exactly is eligible for the free file program? Surprisingly, quite a few people can qualify. To use this program, you must meet these criteria:

1. Your adjusted gross income must be less than $52,000 per year. Keep in mind that this is the adjusted income; the figure that you get after you have claimed your deductions.

And guess what? That's it. No, really, it is! But, stop and think whether or not you should really use the program.

There's really nothing wrong with the program, and the IRS did a very good thing by creating the program for people to use. The only downside you might see is that you could possibly overpay on your taxes, if your tax situation happens to be a bit more complicated than most people's. Most software and online programs can only handle simple or basic tax situations, because it is all computerized. If your taxes are complicated, such as if you are a sole proprietor or a real estate investor, think about going to a CPA for help instead.

But truthfully, the free file program will work well for most people. Now go and gather the proper information and get started!


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