2016 Tax Season Opens January 19
The Internal Revenue Service announced that the tax season will begin on Tuesday, January 19, 2016. More than 150 million individual returns are expected to be filed in 2016, with more than four out of five being prepared using tax return preparation software and e-file. Processing of paper returns will begin at the same time.
The IRS anticipates issuing more than nine out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days.
As part of the Security Summit initiative, the IRS has been working closely with the tax industry and state revenue departments to provide stronger protections against identity theft for taxpayers during the coming filing season.
Filing Deadline Extended Due to Emancipation Day
The filing deadline to submit 2015 tax returns is Monday, April 18, 2016, rather than the traditional April 15 date. This is because Washington D.C. will celebrate Emancipation Day on Friday, April 15.
The official date for Emancipation Day is April 16. However, when the 16th falls on a weekend it is observed on the nearest weekday. In 2016, April 16 falls on a Saturday.
Patriots Day for Maine and Massachusetts
Due to Patriots Day, the filing deadline for Main and Massachusetts will be Tuesday, April 19, 2016.
The IRS urges all taxpayers to make sure they have all their year-end statements in hand before filing, including Forms W-2 from employers, Forms 1099 from banks and other payers, and Form 1095-A from the Marketplace for those claiming the premium tax credit.
Seventy percent of the nation’s taxpayers are eligible for Free File, which applies to Individuals and families with incomes of $62,000 or less. TurboTax offers Free File.
Free Tax Help for the Elderly
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) offer free tax help to people who qualify. Go to irs.gov and enter “free tax prep” in the search box to learn more and find a VITA or TCE site near you, or download the IRS2Go app on your smart phone and find a free tax prep provider.