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Get Your Taxes Done For Free – Quick and Easy With AARP!

Posted on 02/8/2012 by |All the news that matters for Illinoisans over 50. | Comments

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Hola, Jenn from the Comms team here letting you know about a great AARP Foundation program, the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program. I seriously love this program and our Tax-Aide volunteers. Let me tell you why.

The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program is nationwide. No matter where you live, there is usually a site near you. Sites are open from February 1st through April 15th. Tax-Aide is run by fully trained and IRS-certified volunteers who love their work. Tax-Aide is completely FREE. You don’t even need to be an AARP member to utilize the Tax-Aide program? Does it get any better? If you’ve never taken advantage of one of our Tax-Aide sites, here are some insider tips to help you fly right through the process.

Before you go:

  • Our volunteers do simple income tax returns – if you own two homes, a yacht and have some offshore bank accounts, you may want to consider having your taxes done by a professional accountant.
  • As you can imagine, many of the sites are BUSY BUSY BUSY. It’s best to make an appointment now. (Insider tip – if you want to try to get away with a walk-in appointment, wait a few weeks – sites tend to be less busy in March).
  • AARP Foundation Tax-Aide is geared towards doing taxes for the 50+ who have a limited incomes.

Don’t forget:

While helping out at a site last year, I cannot tell you how many people forgot to bring along critical documents which prompted panicked cell phone calls, repeated trips home, etc. Make sure you bring the following with you:

Any Income Documents

  • Last year’s tax return
  • Social Security cards or other official documentation for yourself and all dependents
  • Checkbook if you want to do a direct deposit of any refund(s)
  • W-2 from each employer
  • Unemployment compensation statements
  • SSA-1099 form showing the total Social Security benefits paid to you for the year, or Form RRB-1099, Tier 1 Railroad Retirement benefits
  • 1099 forms reporting interest (1099-INT), dividends (1099-DIV), proceeds from sales (1099-B), as well as documentation showing the original purchase price of your sold assets
  • 1099-R form if you received a pension or annuity, especially if you had a portion withheld for income tax purposes
  • 1099-MISC form showing any miscellaneous income

Payments
You will need to bring all forms and canceled checks indicating federal and state income tax paid (including quarterly estimated tax payments).

Deductions
Most taxpayers have a choice of taking either a standard deduction or itemizing their deductions. If you have a substantial amount of deductions, you may want to itemize. You will need to bring the following information:

  • 1098 form showing any home mortgage interest
  • Receipts or canceled checks for medical/dental expenses (including doctor and hospital bills and medical insurance premiums), receipts for prescription medicines, costs of assisted living services and bills for home improvements, such as ramps and railings for people with disabilities
  • Receipts for contributions to charity
  • Receipts or canceled checks for all tax income and property taxes you paid, as well as records of tax refunds

To find the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide site nearest you use our online locator tool or call our toll free number 1-888-227-7669.