Tax season begins: What you need to know when filing in Indiana

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(Associated Press)

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INDIANAPOLIS – Today is the first day of the 2021 individual income tax season and the Indiana Department of Revenue (DOR) is now accepting tax filings.

DOR announced Friday that Hoosiers have from now until April 15, 2021, to file their individual income tax returns and pay any owed taxes.

The agency is recommending electronic filing and payment because it is “higher quality and much quicker than paper processes.” Hoosiers can also expect refunds up to four times faster than paper returns––under 14 days on average, according to DOR.

Looking for some help? Hoosiers have several free options to help them file their taxes including:

  • The Indiana freefile program allows over two million qualified Hoosiers that had an adjusted gross income of $72,000 or less in 2020 to file both their state and federal taxes for free using certified online software.
  • The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program focuses on helping low- and moderate-income people, with special attention to those over age 50.
  • The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs offer free tax help for taxpayers who qualify including individuals who generally make $57,000 or less, persons with disabilities and limited English-speaking taxpayers.
  • The Notre Dame Tax Clinic is a federally funded Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) that represents clients in controversies with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and educates individuals about their rights and responsibilities as taxpayers.
  • The John Boner Neighborhood Centers is part of Indy Free Tax Prep, Central Indiana’s Network for Free Tax Preparation. As part of the IRS’ Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, they offer free tax preparation and other services to eligible residents.
  • Indy Free Tax Prep is a network of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites through the United Way of Central Indiana offering free tax preparation to individuals and families with a combined household income of $66,000 or less.
  • The Indiana Legal Services Low Income Taxpayer Clinic serves the community by providing free legal assistance to Indiana taxpayers involved in disputes with the IRS.

Going to need more time to file a return? Individuals who are not able to file by the April 15 deadline can file an extension directly with DOR or with the IRS.  If the IRS extension is granted, the Indiana extension is automatically granted. A timely filed extension moves the federal tax filing deadline to October 15, 2021, and the Indiana filing deadline to November 15, 2021.  

DOR said it’s important to remember the extension only shifts the filing deadline––not the payment deadline. The agency said 90% of the taxes owed are still required to be paid by April 15, 2021, to avoid penalties and interest.

Visit Dor.In.Gov for more tax tips and the latest forms. For questions on individual income taxes, customers may email DOR at IndividualTaxAssistance@dor.in.gov or call Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST at 317-232-2240.

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