As taxpayers get ready to file their federal tax returns, most will also be thinking about preparing their state taxes. There’s some good news for filers wanting to save money. Eligible taxpayers can file their federal and, in many cases, their state taxes at no cost.
Taxpayers whose adjusted gross income was $72,000 or less in 2019 can file their 2020 federal taxes for free using IRS Free File. Many of them can also do their state taxes at no charge. They do so through Free File offered by the IRS.
Here’s are a few things for taxpayers to know about filing state tax returns through Free File.
- Most people make less than the $72,000 income limit. So, most people can use Free File.
- Generally, taxpayers must complete their federal tax return before they can begin their state taxes.
- More than 20 states have a state Free File program patterned after the federal partnership. This means many taxpayers are eligible for free federal and free state online tax preparation.
- The states with a Free File program are Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia, plus the District of Columbia.
- IRS Free File partners feature online products, some in Spanish. They offer most or some state tax returns for free as well. Some of them may charge so it’s important for taxpayers to explore their free options.
- Free File partners will charge a fee for state tax return preparation unless their offer says upfront the taxpayer can file both federal and state returns for free. Taxpayers who want to use one of the state Free File program products should go to their state tax agency’s Free File page.
- Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington and Wyoming don’t have an income tax. So, IRS Free File for a federal return may be the only tax product people in those states need.