Helpful Resources From the IRS for Filing 2023 Tax ReturnFeb 01, 2024 10:13AM ● By Donna Walker
The Internal Revenue Service encourages taxpayers to check out IRS.gov for tips, tools and resources to help them get ready to file their 2023 federal income tax return.
The Get Ready page on IRS.gov outlines steps taxpayers can take now to make filing easier in 2024. The IRS typically begins accepting tax returns in late January.
Interactive Tax Assistant
The Interactive Tax Assistant is a tool on IRS.gov that can help taxpayers with various tax law questions, including:
· Who needs to file a tax return.
· What is the best filing status to use.
· Who can claim a dependent.
· Who is eligible to claim a credit or deduct certain expenses.
Earned Income Tax Credit Assistant
The Earned Income Tax Credit Assistant helps low- to moderate-income workers and families get a tax break. EITC can reduce taxes owed and may give taxpayers a larger refund. Taxpayers can use the EITC Assistant to determine:
· If they are eligible to claim EITC.
· If they have any qualifying children or relatives.
· The estimated amount of their credit.
· The filing status they should use.
‘Where’s My Refund?’
Most refunds are issued in less than 21 calendar days. Taxpayers can use “Where’s My Refund?” to check the status of their 2023 income tax refund within 24 hours of e-filing. Refund information is normally available after four weeks for taxpayers who filed a paper return. Information on “Where’s My Refund?” will update overnight so there is no need to check the tool more than once a day.
IRS Individual Online Account
Taxpayers with a Social Security number or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number can create or access their IRS Individual Online Account to get information they need to file their return.
With an IRS Individual Online Account, people can:
· View balance owed, payment history and schedule payments.
· Cancel scheduled payments – new feature for 2024.
· Get transcripts.
· View or create payment plans.
· See digital copies of some IRS notices.
· View key data from their most recently filed tax return, including adjusted gross income.
· Validate bank accounts and save multiple accounts, eliminating the need to re-enter bank account information every time they make a payment.
· View, approve and electronically sign power of attorney and tax information authorizations from their tax professional.
Identity Protection PIN
An Identity Protection (IP) PIN is a six-digit number that prevents someone else from filing a tax return using a taxpayer’s Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. The IP PIN is known only to the taxpayer and the IRS. It helps the IRS verify the taxpayer’s identity when they file an electronic or paper tax return.
The fastest way to receive an IP PIN is to use the online Get an IP PIN tool, which is available through mid-November. Taxpayers who want an IP PIN and do not already have an Individual Online Account on IRS.gov must register to confirm their identity.
Filing options on IRS.gov
Taxpayers should make IRS.gov their first stop when looking for options to file their 2023 federal income tax return.
IRS Free File. Almost everyone can file electronically for free by using IRS Free File. Those who are comfortable preparing their own taxes can use IRS Free File Fillable Forms, regardless of their income, to file their tax return either online or by mail.
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance/Tax Counseling for the Elderly. Taxpayers can find organizations in their community with IRS certified volunteers that provide free tax help for eligible taxpayers including working families, the elderly, the disabled and people who speak limited English.
MilTax. A Department of Defense program, MilTax generally offers free return preparation and electronic filing software for federal income tax returns and up to three state income tax returns for all military members, and some veterans, with no income limit.
Direct File pilot. The IRS is piloting a new tax filing service during the upcoming filing season called Direct File that gives eligible taxpayers a new choice to file their 2023 federal tax returns online, for free, directly with the IRS. Find more information on Direct File about pilot eligibility, scope, and the participating states.
Find an authorized e-file provider. Tax pros accepted by the IRS electronic filing program are authorized IRS e-file providers. They are qualified to prepare, transmit, and process e-filed returns.
Most tax return preparers provide outstanding and professional tax service. However, choosing the wrong tax return preparer hurts taxpayers financially every year. Be sure to check tips for choosing a tax preparer and how to avoid unethical “ghost” return preparers. Taxpayers can use the IRS Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications, found on the IRS.gov website under the Tax Pros tab at the top of the home page.
The IRS website has a full section of information for those preparing to file taxes at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-ready-to-file-your-taxes.