How to File Your Taxes for Free With Local and Citywide Resources

Take advantage of Free File programs from the IRS and free assistance from local organizations and volunteer-run centers to help make your tax season worry-free.

Janrey Serapio
March 12, 2024

Tax Day this year is on Monday, April 15. 

Columbia Neighbors compiled this handy guide of local and citywide resources that will help make your tax season worry-free.

Most of these resources are made available for local residents by New York City, New York State, the federal government, and local organizations. If you know you’re going to be late on filing this year, you can request an extension by filling out this form. 

And before you head to an appointment with a tax preparation service, try consulting this IRS fact sheet to make sure that you bring the right documents with you. 

How to File Online with the IRS Free File Service

Did you know that more people can take advantage of the online IRS Free File service program this year? 

If your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) was $79,000 or less in 2023, you can file your federal taxes online for free due to the IRS Free File program. This is a $6,000 increase from last tax season’s required AGI, which was $73,000 or less. 

To start, navigate to the IRS’ website to find a tax preparer through their online Trusted Partners listings. Certain tax preparation services have different AGI limits, so make sure you're qualified to work with a service. Once you determine that you’re qualified, get your documents ready and reach out to your desired tax preparation service and they’ll take it from there. 

How to Take Advantage of IRS VITA/TCE Sites in NYC

If you’re looking to get in-person help with your tax return, you can visit a local Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site or, if you’re a senior (over the age of 65 years old), you can visit a Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) provider. VITA/TCE sites are run by volunteers certified by the IRS to provide free tax preparation. 

You can find a VITA/TCE site near you on the IRS website. If you live in New York City, you can file with a VITA/TCE provider if your AGI was $85,000 or less. Learn more about the program and see a full list of sites in New York City. 

Receive In-Person and Online Assistance from These Local and Citywide Organizations

These organizations around New York City also provide free tax preparation assistance for a wide variety of groups and income levels.

If you know of other organizations providing free tax preparation assistance to Upper Manhattan, please let us know.