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United Way Offers Free Online Tax Filing

Free service saves low- and moderate-income households time and money


A sticky note reading Tax Time sits atop paperwork near a pen, cash and a calculator

For those struggling to make ends meet, affording a paid tax preparer isn’t the only hurdle during tax season — finding time to meet with a preparer is also a challenge. Taking time off from work isn’t financially feasible and low- to moderate-income households often juggle multiple jobs or work long and unpredictable shifts.

 

Recognizing the financial and time constraints of these households, United Way of Northern New Jersey and its partners  the IRS, Norwescap and Greater Providence Missionary Baptist Church — offer free tax preparation services through a safe, secure and convenient online portal.

 

By visiting uwnnj.org/freetaxprep, individuals and families who are ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) or in poverty can access the easy-to-use online system to have their state and federal tax returns prepared and filed electronically all while saving the average $270 fee paid preparers charge.

 

“In these challenging times, when many of our neighbors are struggling to afford the basics, it is crucial that we offer tools that can alleviate the burden of tax preparation,” said United Way CEO Kiran Handa Gaudioso. “Our online portal is more than a convenience — it’s a lifeline, ensuring clients can file their taxes accurately and get back what they are due, all while saving time and money.”

 

The online portal uses secure document uploads, encrypted email communication, and video conferencing. Assistance and forms are available in both English and Spanish. Clients using the online portal can also expect a high-quality experience with IRS tax law-certified preparers, a double review process, and completed returns within seven to 10 business days from document uploads, Gaudioso said.

 

“We’ve been using their secure online portal with ease. So easy to use and upload,” said client Barbara. “Then they make an [appointment] for a Zoom call with a certified agent and you are done! Wonderful people, wonderful organization.”

 

In addition to accessing the easy-to-use online system, individuals and families who visit  uwnnj.org/freetaxprep can also schedule a drop-off or in-person appointment or use self-filing software to file their taxes for free.

 

The self-filing software allows households earning $79,000 or less to file their federal and state returns. Self-employed filers can access a Schedule C and all filers using the software can schedule time with a tax coach if they have questions.

 

“Whether our clients choose the convenience of the online portal or prefer the hands-on approach of a drop-off or in-person appointment, our goal remains the same — to ensure that taxes are filed accurately and with no costs attached, using a service they can trust,” Gaudioso emphasized.


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