HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 19, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- With filing season now open, the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue today announced a number of electronic filing, or e-filing, options are available for residents to file personal income tax returns for tax year 2015.
E-filing offers advantages not available to taxpayers filing by paper, including error-reducing automatic calculators, instant confirmation of successful filing, faster refund processing and direct deposit options. E-filing is also more cost-effective for the department because electronically filed returns are less expensive to process and don't require department printing or mailing.
To help taxpayers navigate the variety of e-filing options, an Internet-based interactive tool is available at www.pafreefile.com. Based on a taxpayer's answers to a few simple questions, this tool will help determine for which e-file options each taxpayer qualifies. Options include:
- PA Free File
Available to filers with federal adjusted gross income of $62,000 or less, PA Free File is a safe and convenient Internet-based electronic filing tool. PA Free File software allows qualifying taxpayers to file state and federal personal income tax returns simultaneously for free. The software is available through reputable vendors approved to prepare state and federal filings at no cost to taxpayers or the commonwealth. Free File offers vary by vendor, and details of each free offer and a link to each vendor's free filing product is available at www.pafreefile.com.
Padirectfile, a state-only personal income tax filing system, is available through the Department of Revenue's website, www.revenue.pa.gov.
- E-filing for a Fee
Paid tax preparers and software providers that offer e-filing for a fee may begin processing returns on January 19.
New this year: As part of a national effort by states to combat stolen-identity tax fraud, software programs are asking tax filers to voluntarily provide a driver's license number or state-issued identification card number with the filing of a return. Providing this information gives the Department of Revenue an extra security measure to help make sure tax refunds reach the proper filer. Providing the number is strictly optional and may help to speed the processing of a taxpayer's return. A taxpayer's return will not be rejected if a driver's license or state-issued identification is not provided.
Taxpayer Service and Assistance
Personal income tax assistance is available through the department's Online Customer Service Center at www.revenue.pa.gov and by calling 717-787-8201 between 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Taxpayers may also visit a Revenue district office, listed in the government pages of local phone directories, for basic state personal income tax filing assistance. Assistance at district offices is available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and taxpayers are encouraged to bring their Social Security cards with them to facilitate tax filing.
All taxpayers who received more than $33 in total gross taxable income in calendar year 2015 must file Pennsylvania personal income tax returns by midnight, Monday, April 18.
Free tax forms and instructions are currently available at www.revenue.pa.gov.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Gary Miller or Maia Warren, 717-787-6960
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Revenue