Each year, I wait until the last possible minute to prepare and file my income tax returns. Basically, I just don't like to do my taxes. First of all, I usually wind up paying additional taxes each year, so I'm in no hurry to pay them early. Second, it's just no fun. I have used various programs over the years to prepare and file my taxes: TaxAct, H&R Block, etc. Little did I know I probably could have done my taxes for free.

"Good Morning America" recently featured some tips on how to prepare and file income taxes for free. Among them:

1. File through the IRS web site. It features 20 different programs you can use to file your taxes at no charge. There are some income restrictions.

2. Let an IRS volunteer prepare your taxes for you. Again, there are income restrictions and they file only the most basic of returns.

3. Are you a senior? The AARP can help you prepare our taxes. Again, there are income restrictions, but it's free.

4. In the military? There are tax preparers available at your duty station, and again, the service is free.

5. If these situations don't apply, you can still contact the IRS for assistance for preparing your taxes. While you might feel a bit paranoid letting the IRS prepare your taxes, look at it this way: if they make a mistake, they have no one else but themselves to blame.

More detailed explanations are available in this video.


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