Free Tax Help Available in St Louis

IRS News Release No: IL/KS/MO 2013-11, March 2013

ST LOUIS — With less than a month until the April 15 tax filing deadline, the IRS wants everyone to know free tax return preparation is available.

“If you can use a computer, the IRS.gov website is your one-stop federal tax shop,” said IRS spokesman Michael Devine. “Free File lets you use brand-name software to prepare and efile your tax return for free.” 

The IRS also partners with nonprofit and community organizations to provide free tax preparation services for qualified taxpayers.  In addition to free tax return preparation assistance, sites also provide free electronic filing.   Last year, nearly 100 million taxpayers opted for IRS e-file the safest, fastest and easiest way to submit their individual tax returns. 

The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program offers free tax help generally to people who earn $51,000 and less.

The FCTC Friendly Temple MB Church, 5515 Dr. Martin L King Dr., has been preparing returns for 25 years. They will be open Saturdays until April 13 from 9 am - 12 noon.

The MCTC Southern Mission MB Church, 8171 Wesley Ave., is in it’s 5th year of preparing returns.  They are open every Saturday until April 13 from 10 am to 2 pm.  Appointments are available at 314-691-9500, or just walk-in.

The MCTC Westside Missionary Baptist Church, 4675 Page Blvd., is in it’s 5th year of preparing returns.  They will be open Saturday March 30 from 9 am -11:30 am.  No appointment needed.

The MCTC Jamison Memorial C.M.E. Church, 609 N Leffingwell Ave., is in it’s 3rd year of preparing returns.  They will be open on Saturday April 6 from 10 am to 1 pm by appointment only 314-533-2440.

To find other VITA sites, visit www.IRS.gov or call 800-906-9887.

The IRS-sponsored Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) Program offers free tax help to taxpayers with priority assistance to people who are 60 and older.  As part of the TCE Program, AARP offers the Tax-Aide counseling program during the filing season.  Many sites have multilingual volunteers who can assist people with limited English skills.  To locate the nearest TCE site, visit IRS.gov or call 888-227-7669.

Taxpayers need to present the following items to have their returns prepared:

  • Photo identification
  • Valid Social Security cards for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents
  • Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) assignment letter for taxpayer, spouse and dependents, if applicable
  • Birth dates for taxpayer, spouse and dependents on the tax return
  • Wage and earning statement(s) Form W-2, W-2G, 1099-R, from all employers
  • Interest and dividend statements from banks (Forms 1099)
  • A copy of last year’s federal and state returns, if available
  • Proof of bank or credit union routing numbers and account numbers for direct deposit
  • Other relevant information about income and expenses
  • Total paid for day care
  • Day care provider's identifying number

To file taxes electronically on a Married Filing Jointly return, both spouses must be present to sign the required forms.

Trained and certified community volunteers can help eligible taxpayers claim valuable credits and deductions, such as the Child Tax Credit or the Credit for the Elderly.  Many people may also get assistance in claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a significant financial boost to low- and moderate-income workers.  Volunteers can help eligible taxpayers file a tax return, even if they do not have a filing requirement, and specifically claim the credit to get the benefit.

For taxpayers who want to prepare and e-file their own tax returns, the IRS offers a self-assistance service at many VITA and TCE sites. Individuals with a simple return that need help or do not have access to a computer can visit a self-help tax preparation site.   

An IRS-certified volunteer can guide them through the process. In addition, taxpayers may use IRS Free File.  

 The military also partners with the IRS to provide free tax assistance to military personnel and their families. The Armed Forces Tax Council (AFTC) oversees the operation of the military tax programs worldwide. Volunteers are trained and equipped to address military specific tax issues, such as combat zone tax benefits and the effect of the EITC guidelines.

 Taxpayers who file electronically can opt to file now and pay later. If taxpayers owe, they can make a payment April 15, 2013, by authorizing an electronic funds withdrawal (direct debit) from a bank account, paying by credit, by check or money order (made out to the United States Treasury) using Form 1040-V, Payment Voucher.

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