With income tax season opening soon, the Minnesota Department of Revenue announced that over 200 sites will be offering free tax assistance for those filing income tax and property tax refund returns. Most sites are open from early February through April 15.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and AARP Tax-Aide programs are two free tax preparation options where volunteers help Minnesotans prepare their federal and state returns. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) certifies volunteers from both programs to prepare basic tax returns in Minnesota communities.
“Along with free tax preparation software, these free tax preparation sites are another available resource for Minnesotans to get help with their 2018 taxes,” said Minnesota Department of Revenue Commissioner Cynthia Bauerly. “Volunteers at these sites across the state are certified by the IRS and are ready to help qualified individuals file their tax returns on time and accurately.”
You can get help at a VITA site if any of the following apply:
• You are age 60 or older
• You are a person with a disability
• You speak limited or no English
• Your annual income is less than $55,000
The AARP Tax-Aide program offers free tax preparation for all Minnesotans, particularly those age 50 or older. Unlike VITA sites, AARP Tax-Aide sites do not have income restrictions.
Free electronic filing is also available for Minnesotans with an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) of $66,000 or less. To see if you are eligible for free electronic filing, see the Electronic Filing Software for Individuals page, https://www.revenue.state.mn.us/individuals/individ_income/Pages/free-electronic-filing.aspx.
You can search for a site near you (http://ow.ly/CgIV30nqhLj) on the department’s website using its search feature and interactive map. You can search for sites by zip code or county, and find sites with interpreters and volunteers certified to file military returns. The interactive map has search options by city, county, or zip code.
You can also search for sites by calling 651-297-3724 or 1-800-657-3989 (toll-free).
You will need to bring certain items with you when visiting a site such as a photo ID, W-2 information, banking information for direct deposit, and other applicable items. Visit https://www.revenue.state.mn.us/individuals/individ_income/Documents/What%20should%20I%20bring%20with%20me%20to%20have%20my%20taxes%20prepared.pdf for a list of suggested items to bring to a tax preparation site.
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