From February 1 to April 15, head to one of the thirty senior and
community centers, libraries, and churches where the Tax-Aide program
provides free assistance to seniors and low-income persons (those
definitions are not rigid). The preparers are experts, and their work
is double-checked by a co-worker. You'll need proof of identification,
and birth date, wage and earning statements, and interest and dividend
statements, and your bank routing number if you want a direct deposit.
A copy of last year's federal and state returns would also be helpful.
It's by appointment only, and they do not keep you waiting. In their
dealings they are considerate and not all officious. They make sure you
understand they are on your side, but they also make it clear what the
law is. Appointments fill up fast, so call early to reserve your space.