Free File Alliance Kicks Off

Free File Alliance Kicks Off 7th Year of Free Tax Preparation Services for 70 Percent of Americans

More than 98 Million Taxpayers Making $56,000 or Less are Eligible for Free Tax Assistance and E-Filing Through

WASHINGTON, DC (January 16, 2009) – The Free File Alliance (, a coalition of 19 private tax software companies that have partnered with the Internal Revenue Service to provide free electronic tax preparation services for millions of Americans, today announced the beginning of its seventh tax season of operation. More than 98 million taxpayers with an adjusted gross income of $56,000 or less are eligible for the program.

“The Free File Alliance is offering free tax assistance for more taxpayers than ever before. We invite eligible taxpayers to join the 24 million Americans who have already used this program during the last six years,” said Tim Hugo, the executive director of the Free File Alliance. “Free File provides step-by-step help to take the guesswork out of doing your taxes.”

Taxpayers who would like to take advantage of the program can visit the Internal Revenue Service website, On the IRS website, taxpayers can find e-filing offers from participating companies and choose the one that fits their needs. Users are then transferred to the company’s website, where they receive the necessary help to prepare, complete and electronically file their federal income tax returns, just as they would on paper. Three of the 19 participating software companies now offer the service in Spanish.

“We have worked closely with the IRS each year to strengthen Free File and make the program even easier to use,” said Hugo. “Improvements this year include access to a standard package of electronic forms that are commonly used by Free File participants, so users can easily find the form that is right for them.”

Also new this year, taxpayers who are very familiar with tax law and need no preparation assistance may fill out and file their federal income tax forms electronically using Free File Fillable Tax Forms. There are no income limitations for this basic service.

The Free File Alliance companies have worked with the IRS every year to improve the program and adhere to a series of consumer-friendly “best practices.” Taxpayers responding to an IRS survey about last year’s program reported a tremendous level of satisfaction with Free File. According to the survey, 92 percent said they intend to use Free File again next year, 95 percent said they found Free File very easy or somewhat easy to use, and 98 percent said they would recommend the program to others. Convenience and the free cost are the most appealing factors of Free File.