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Free File Alliance & IRS Launch 10th Year of Free Online Tax Preparation Services for Millions of Americans

Taxpayers Making $57,000 or Less Can Visit IRS.gov to Prepare and E-File Federal Tax Returns Through Partnership Between Free File Alliance & IRS

WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 17, 2012) – The Free File Alliance, a coalition of industry-leading tax software companies partnered with the Internal Revenue Service, today announced the launch of the 2012 IRS Free File program. Since its inception in 2003, IRS Free File has offered low-to-moderate income taxpayers free access to leading online commercial tax preparation software. This year, every taxpayer with a 2011 Adjusted Gross Income of $57,000 or less may visit www.IRS.gov to prepare, complete and e-file their federal tax returns at no cost.

“IRS Free File makes tax time simple, fast and free for 70 percent of Americans,” said Tim Hugo, executive director of the Free File Alliance. “For 10 years, the Free File Alliance has partnered with the IRS to give taxpayers access to leading online tax preparation software and critical step-by-step support. This year, we invite every taxpayer making $57,000 or less to join the 33 million Americans who have already saved time and money by using IRS Free File.”

To begin, taxpayers should visit the IRS website - www.irs.gov/freefile. Users will find a list of Free File Alliance member companies and may either choose the one that fits their needs or utilize the “help me find a company” tool. After selecting a tax software company, users will be transferred to the company's website to prepare, complete and electronically file their federal income tax returns. The service is also available in Spanish.

Thanks to the Free File Alliance’s partnership with the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA), a service for low-to-moderate income taxpayers, Free File Alliance member software will also be available on self-assist kiosks at VITA sites in 29 states across the country. This partnership will extend VITA’s ability to provide free tax preparation services to more taxpayers who need additional assistance.

“The Free File Alliance has partnered with VITA to help us serve even more taxpayers who need tax help,” said Hugo.  “Our collaboration with VITA expands Free File’s ability to deliver user-friendly, efficient tax preparation software to Americans who need it most.”

Free File Alliance member companies have continually worked with the IRS to strengthen the Free File program, and taxpayers have consistently reported that it is user-friendly and efficient. Responding to a 2009 IRS survey, 96 percent of users said they found Free File easy to use, while 98 percent said they would recommend the program to others.

About the Free File Alliance

The Free File Alliance, a coalition of 14 industry-leading tax software companies, has partnered with the IRS since 2003 to help low- and middle-income Americans prepare, complete and e-file their federal tax returns online. The Free File Alliance is committed to giving 70 percent of Americans free access to the industry’s top online tax preparation software. More than 33 million returns have been filed through IRS Free File since its inception. For more information, visit www.freefilealliance.org.

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