How to File Your Taxes for Free

If you had adjusted gross income of $73,000 or less in 2021, you can e-file your federal return without charge.

drawing of a hand coming out of a computer screen holding a tag saying "free"
(Image credit: Illustration by Daniel Diosdado)

Tax software can alert you to money-saving tax deductions and credits, help you avoid costly errors, and file your tax returns electronically, which will reduce the wait for your refund. But depending on the complexity of your return, a tax software program can cost you $100 or more. Before you shell out any money, though, find out whether you can file your federal tax return—and in some cases, your state tax return, too—for free.

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Sandra Block
Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Block joined Kiplinger in June 2012 from USA Today, where she was a reporter and personal finance columnist for more than 15 years. Prior to that, she worked for the Akron Beacon-Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. In 1993, she was a Knight-Bagehot fellow in economics and business journalism at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She has a BA in communications from Bethany College in Bethany, W.Va.