Free In-Person Tax Filing

If you earn less than $66,000 a year, you can have the United Way file your taxes for you, in-person, for free.

That’s right.


United Way

You contact your local United Way branch, take your tax documents, and they will file your taxes for you for FREE while you wait. If you are over 50, in the military, undocumented, whatever …  they have something to help you file FREE.

Unfortunately, even if you earn less than $66,000 (or $69,000 if you just wanted to use the free online tax prep software) and you own a business (you file a schedule C) you are NOT eligible to get your taxes done for free. They say the free software doesn’t have a schedule C.

Taxes 1040

This year, our taxes don’t have to be filed until July 15th so you have a few more weeks.


FREE Tax Prep Software

Today on Patriot Act I learned that fewer than 7% of Americans that CAN file their taxes for free, actually DO file for free. There’s a whole episode about “Why Doing Taxes is So Hard” here, but I wanted to make sure to drop the link to the website that the show put together that lists all the FREE tax prep software in one place.

Patriot Act With Hasan Minhaj

Basically, the show says that even though tax prep folks do have free software for folks that make less than $69,000, they make it ridiculously hard to find. If you Google “free tax prep software” a bunch of links will pop up that say they are free but they will actually lead to you expensive upsells.

The website is a bit crass but it has the links to the free tax prep software, so here you are: go visit

Due to covid-19 we have until July 15th to file our taxes. Let’s make sure if you can, that you do, file free.

New Child Tax Credit Rules Cut Out Poor Families

The working poor are getting the shaft again.


The Huffington Post has reported that the House has just voted to change the requirements for who can get the Child Tax Credit. It’s being called the Child Tax Credit Improvement Act of 2014. Now, families earning up to $205,000 can get it and families earning less than $15,000 cannot get it. That means that if you have a full-time minimum wage job earning $7.50 per hour ($13,920 for the year) then you will NOT be able to get the $1,000 credit on your taxes.

According to an analysis by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, that means a mom working full time at a minimum wage job would receive no help from the credit — because she would be earning only $14,500. Indeed, that mom would lose $1,725 under the new bill, while a family of four earning $150,000 would gain $2,200, according to the center’s analysis.

About 12 million people, including 6 million children, would be pushed further into poverty if the measure became law.

If you’re worried about undocumented people. no worries:

The bill also includes a provision that would bar anyone from receiving the tax break if they do not provide a Social Security number. Many immigrants, including the undocumented, pay their taxes using a tax identification number instead, and all of them would be barred under the bill.

If you think that this bill is bad for America, please contact your House Representativeby entering your zip code here.




No Same Day Tax Refunds

Every tax season I see ads suggesting that getting a same day refund is an awesome way to start off the tax season. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Same day tax refund are loans.
Let’s be clear. The reason that tax preparers are so anxious to “help” you get your tax refund the same day because 1) you are taking out a loan with a very high interest rate and 2) they get a piece of that loan. Don’t be fooled by all the marketing and smiles of the people trying to sell you on same day tax refunds. There is no reason you need to spend money to get the money the government has used interest free all year. It doesn’t make sense if you say it out loud, “I’m going to pay ___(insert company name)____ $_(insert fee amount)____ to get the money that the government owes me”.

Filing electronically is safe, fast, and may be free.
Find out if you are able to have your tax return prepared for free. If you’re filing a 1040EZ or 1040 it’s entirely possible that you can have someone help you file electronically and have your refund deposited directly into your credit union or bank account. Your money will be deposited quickly, safely, and in full. Why waste upwards of $50 of your hard earned money to get your refund a week or two early?

I should start printing up shirts: