Tax season is here, and I’m happy to report that the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program has adjusted to our new normal. The Tax-Aide program provides in-person and virtual tax preparation help to anyone, free of charge, with a special focus on taxpayers who are over 50 and have low to moderate income.
My mother is a big Tax-Aide fan, and she is so happy to know that adjustments have been made to keep clients and volunteers safe for this tax season.
Tax help is provided in safe environments based on a number of factors, including where you are located, Covid-19 spread and volunteer availability. Tax-Aide service started on Feb. 12, in keeping with the IRS announcement that it will start accepting returns on that date. If you need tax help, visit aarpfoundation.org/taxaide to request tax help or answer any questions you might have.
The U.S. tax code is complicated. As a result, many taxpayers overpay, turn to services they can’t afford or don’t file — missing out on credits and deductions that they’ve earned.
The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program has more than 36,000 volunteers that provide free tax preparation and filing services in nearly 5,000 communities.
Tax-Aide volunteers are trained and IRS-certified every year to make sure they know about and understand the latest changes and additions to the tax code. I am proud to say that this is the largest volunteer-based tax assistance and preparation program in the U.S.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Tax-Aide offers several options for taxpayer assistance. These options vary by location and are subject to change.
• In-Person: In Tax-Aide’s traditional in-person service, taxes are prepared and filed by IRS-certified tax counselors — now with strict physical distancing measures in place.
• Low-Contact: Taxpayers interact with IRS-certified volunteers in one or two short, in-person meetings to exchange documents.
• Contact-Free: Taxpayers interact with Tax-Aide counselors online or by phone and exchange documents electronically.
• Self-Preparation: Tax-Aide provides taxpayers with free access to software so they can prepare their own taxes. Taxpayers can also request help from a Tax-Aide counselor to coach them through the process via computer screen-sharing.
The information below includes items you might need for Tax-Aide service to help you prepare your tax returns. This is a general list; there might be additional materials you’ll need based on the type of service needed.
- Previous year’s tax return(s).
- Social Security cards and/or ITIN notices/cards or other official documentation that show the taxpayer identification numbers for every individual on your return.
- Government-issued photo ID for each taxpayer.
- Checking or savings account information if you want to direct deposit any refund(s) or direct debit any amounts due.
- Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) (for each individual if applicable).
- In 2020, 1.5 million taxpayers who used AARP Foundation Tax-Aide received more than $1 billion in income tax refunds. Now that is a lot of money and refunds.
If you have any questions about the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (888) 227-7669.