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FREE State e-file options for 2012 Tax Return (CA shown as example - All eligble States linked within)

jackc6900 444 January 4, 2013 at 08:28 AM in Finance (5)
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This post will require some collaboration but a few of the other threads got me thinking that there are several states that allow free e-file, that some of you likely don't know about. Most tax return software will often leave free state e-file off the table and will either make you pay $20 to e-file or make you snail mail it in, costing you postage, delivery confirmation, a trip to the post office and a slow refund, if applicable. Since I live in CA I will do a quick run through of what I have done in the past. The process will be the same but if you know your state has a similar free e-file option - add a link to the wiki!

1. Do your fed + state return in your tax software (H&R Block, Turbo Tax, etc)
2. Print or create a PDF version of your state tax return as if you're going to mail it.
3. Go to your state's free e-filing website, for CA it is... https://www.ftb.ca.gov/individual...ware.shtml
4. There is certain criteria to e-file through the website but unless you make over $300k and have some crazy tax credits you likely qualify.
5. Literally copy over the information from the H&R Block Tax forms into the state tax forms - they make it pretty easy to do.
6. Submit and get confirmation number - process takes maybe 10 mins it's so quick and without the added cost of paying your tax software to submit it. hug

Edit: All states will have their own criteria on who does and does not qualify, feel free to add a quick snipet in the wiki but to avoid mucking up the wiki to much it might justbe easier to take a peek at your states filing website and see if you meet the criteria. Most states set these sites up though with the general populous in mind - they tend to want to disqualify the top earners which I imagine varies by state.

Edit2: Full listing here - we'll keep adding to wiki to save on some clicks!! Thanks for everyones help, i've been repping like crazy!

Quote from deldem View Post :
States Participating in the Federal/State e-File Program
http://www.irs.gov/uac/States-Par...le-Program

States Processing State Only Returns
http://www.irs.gov/uac/States-Pro...ly-Returns

86 Comments

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Joined Feb 2006
L6: Expert
409 Reputation
#61
For CA people, if you made any stock trades, you aren't eligible for this as Schedule D is one of the things that disqualify you.
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Joined Jan 2009
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#62
Quote from ViciousTide View Post :
There are some amazing free tax software sites, where if your income is less than $57k, you won't get charged for using their software.
There are some free ones for everyone as well. I use FreeTaxUSA, which is free federally. They let you print out the state for free (only charge you to e-file) so I used that output and filed through my states website and paid nothing last year to file my taxes.
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Joined Nov 2010
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#63
Knew about this years ago...and dont even need to buy any software...just go to irs.gov and they give you links of many free federal and state tax filing websites as long as you fit the criteria
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Joined Dec 2011
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#64
you will find all kind of taxes here in California, tsk
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Joined Jul 2012
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#65
Subbed for link to NC website!
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Joined Jan 2009
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#66
Quote from KingViper View Post :
Adding the following.

KS - https://www.kansas.gov/webfile
MO - http://dor.mo.gov/personal/indivi...freeonline

Updated the wiki with NE, OK, CO, and MA from monkster456's post.
Updated the wiki with AL, AZ, and AR
Updated the wiki with states with no state tax.
Updated the wiki for HI, ID, MS, MT, NM, NC, ND, RI, VT, and WV
The NM link you added was for tax assistance (IE them helping you with your taxes) which was limited to a AGI of 22k. I've corrected the link to actually where individuals can e-file themselves, which does not seem income restricted.

Other links seem to be wrong as well - IE linking to the wrong thing. Some states (such as NM, VA and others) offer a simple electronic version of their paper forms online for residents. It requires knowledge of what to fill in, but is free to submit. Thus you would either need to know what you are doing or have software to tell you what to put.

Some states offer both - free software assistance (income restricted) and the simple digital form. Some people are only linking to the software/assistance version and might mislead someone who already has the software and just needs a way to free file his/her otherwise mailed in form.
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Joined Feb 2008
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#67
Lol... what the puck Kentucky! Intuit/Turbotax

Quote :
Free federal and Kentucky filing if:

Earned $31,000 or less Adjusted Gross Income (AGI), or
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Joined Oct 2010
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Original Poster
#68
What an awesome community - SD'ers helping SD'ers... love it! Im just amaze to see the various states that have no income tax... makes me want to move. CA taxes us up the rear and we're still in debt - someone needs to take the states credit card! laugh out loud
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Joined Feb 2010
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#69
My turbotax returns was 57 dollars more than my state tax returns, only thing i could think of is student loan interest was unable to be deducted on the CA state website. Any ideas?
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Joined Mar 2012
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#70
I've been efiling for free in CA for a few years, but the .pdf trick will make things easier. Thanks!
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Joined Dec 2007
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#71
Quote from mondomango View Post :
I've been efiling for free in CA for a few years, but the .pdf trick will make things easier. Thanks!
Not sure about the PDF trick

I 've also been efiling with CA for the last couple of years. But is Jackc6900 in step 5 talking about a new feature that is add for the 2012 tax year?????

I've never seen the fill in the tax forum - just several page of answer the question and add data.

Step 5
Literally copy over the information from the H&R Block Tax forms into the state tax forms - they make it pretty easy to do.
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Joined Oct 2010
L5: Journeyman
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Original Poster
#72
they make it pretty easy to do it - just follow the steps and you'll see what I mean when you start to e-file through the website. It's not identical to the tax forms line by line but they ask fo the same information and even reference the tax form numbers - very easy to follow from what I remember. Trust me - follow the steps and its a walk in the park. woot
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Joined Nov 2005
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#73
Quote from Slickdeezee View Post :
For CA people, if you made any stock trades, you aren't eligible for this as Schedule D is one of the things that disqualify you.
No go for CA if you have any capital gains or losses. That is not just stock trades, it can be from basic mutual funds. I think the TT lobbyist helped with these guidelines.

Just out of principle, I'm send a hard copy to those tax leaches in CA.
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Joined Aug 2007
just another minion
#74
Um, the link for NC just leads to some shitty state website.

Is there a real link somewhere?
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Joined Oct 2006
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#75
Quote from iGGZ View Post :
Um, the link for NC just leads to some shitty state website.

Is there a real link somewhere?
You're right no point in having that link, it's worthless.
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