Four Ways to File 2021 Taxes for Free
In partnership with the IRS and the Connecticut Association for Human Services, the Woodbridge Senior Center offers free tax preparation through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. For over 50 years the VITA program has offered free tax help to people with low to moderate income, senior citizens, and people with disabilities and limited English. Volunteer preparers are annually trained and certified to IRS standards. This year Woodbridge VITA offers even more ways for you to accurately and painlessly file your tax return and check taxes off your to-do list. Pick the option that suits you. Begin the process once you have all your tax documents together, no earlier than late January. Avoid the last-minute crush; aim to get the job done by the end of March. Taxes are due April 18 this year. BASIC ELIGIBILITY FOR VITA: The VITA program is for individuals who generally make $58,000 or less, persons with disabilities and limited English speaking taxpayers who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns. Also, individuals who are self-employed should have business expenses less than $35,000, and individuals should not have income from a rental property. For a list of services VITA can and cannot provide, click here.
1. Do It Yourself (DIY)
For the 12th year, United Way is providing online tax filing software, accessible through MyFreeTaxes.com, to help taxpayers easily and accurately file their taxes from their computer or smartphone. MyFreeTaxes® is an easy way to file federal and state tax returns for free on a mobile phone, tablet or computer. The majority of taxpayers are able to complete the process of filing federal and state taxes in one hour. Features include:
- Helpline answered by a real person trained by the IRS.
- Schedule C filing for small business and gig work.
- Beginning-to-end interview screens available in Spanish as well as English.
- No cost. No costly add-ons. Free. Just free.
2. Full Virtual
Never leave the comfort of your home and have a trusted IRS-certified Woodbridge VITA preparer complete your taxes remotely. Designed for the pandemic and now here to stay, GetYourRefund® offers a secure national platform through which taxpayers can communicate by email, text and phone with their tax preparer from initial interview through e-filing. Taxpayers can file taxes for 2021, file back taxes (2018-2020), and even amend previous returns. Taxpayers are directed to upload documents using a mobile phone, tablet or computer. If you have camera phone and an email address, you can begin the process starting late January at GetYourRefund.org/WBSC-CT. Turnaround time is typically less than one week.
Available by appointment only, this hybrid option offers drive-in scanning of tax documents followed by phone-based conversations with a Woodbridge VITA preparer and reviewer. If you have no way to capture images of your tax documents but would like to have your taxes prepared virtually by the Woodbridge VITA site preparers. A second drive-through appointment may be required to sign your tax return. Phone Woodbridge Human Services (203) 389-3429 to begin the process. Most clients will have taxes filed within two weeks of initial phone call.
4. In Person
Available by appointment Tuesday mornings only (February 8 - April 12), taxpayers meet in person with a Woodbridge VITA preparer and reviewer and have their taxes completed in person in approximately one hour. There are a limited number of appointments available. Clients must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and wear a face mask throughout the appointment time. Unvaccinated clients may be served through any of the other options above. Phone Woodbridge Human Services (203) 389-3429 to request an appointment.
If Woodbridge VITA offerings are not a good fit for you this year, dial 211 to learn about other VITA sites in the area. For a list of documents you will need to prepare your taxes, click here.