Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Commissioner Lorelei Salas today reminded New Yorkers that there are two weeks left to file taxes before the July 15 deadline. More than 965,000 tax returns remain to be filed across New York City, including 530,000 from taxpayers in Brooklyn and Queens. Commissioner Salas encourages eligible New Yorkers to file for free with NYC Free Tax Prep virtual services.
“With Tax Day quickly approaching, we encourage all eligible New Yorkers to use our services to file their taxes safely and for free,” said DCWP Commissioner Lorelei Salas. “This free support is especially important now with many New Yorkers experiencing significant financial hardships due to COVID-19 who need to stretch every dollar to take care of themselves and their families. There is no reason to pay for preparation fees when our professional volunteer preparers can be your go-to tax preparer for free.”
NYC Free Tax Prep continues to offer remote services, which includes:
- Virtual Free Tax Preparation: New Yorkers with an annual income of $64,000 or less with children, or $45,000 or less without children, are eligible for Virtual Tax Preparation. Those who need assistance claiming their Economic Impact Payment also qualify for this service. Filers can submit photos or scans of tax documents to the preparer via a secure platform, confirm their identity using secure video conference, and complete their return by video conference or by phone with a preparer. Filers will need access to the internet and a smartphone, tablet or computer to use this service.
- Assisted Self-Preparation: New Yorkers with an annual income of $69,000 or less can complete their own 2019 tax returns using eligible free tax filing platforms and receive assistance from an IRS certified VITA/TCE volunteer preparer over the phone or by email. Filers will need access to a computer, tablet, or smartphone; a stable internet connection; an email address, and their 2018 adjusted gross income (AGI) or self-select PIN. Visit nyc.gov/taxprep to check eligibility limits for each tax site.
Economic Impact Payments
Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, eligible individuals and families will receive by direct deposit or mail Economic Impact Payment (stimulus payment) of up to $1,200 (for single filers) and $2,400 (for married couples filing jointly) plus an additional $500 for each dependent child under age 17. NYC Financial Empowerment Center counselors can guide you on how to use IRS tools to check the status of your stimulus payment; get your full payment if you have dependent children under age 17; and get your payment by direct deposit. It is strongly encouraged to have a bank account in order to receive your payment safely and quickly. Find out if you are eligible and what actions you need to take in order to receive your stimulus check: What You Need to Know about Economic Impact Payments. Anyone who is not required to file taxes but is eligible for a stimulus payment, must complete the IRS’ non-filer form by October 15 to receive their payment this year. DCWP also has information about NYC SafeStart and other bank or credit union account options.
NYC Financial Empowerment Centers are providing free financial counseling by phone. The Centers’ professional financial counselors can help you deal with a sudden loss of income, budget—including opening a bank account and direct deposit, how to spend your stimulus payment or tax refund, deal with debt, communicate financial hardship to your creditors, and more. Visit nyc.gov/TalkMoney to schedule an appointment. Financial counseling is confidential and offered in multiple languages, and there are no income or immigration restrictions.
Consumers using a paid preparer should ask the preparer for a Consumers’ Bill of Rights Regarding Tax Preparers (also available in Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Korean, Russian and Spanish) and read it thoroughly before having their taxes prepared, and also get DCWP’s Tips Regarding Tax Preparers.
About Department of Consumer and Worker Protection
NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) protects and enhances the daily economic lives of New Yorkers to create thriving communities. DCWP licenses more than 75,000 businesses in more than 50 industries and enforces key consumer protection, licensing, and workplace laws that apply to countless more. By supporting businesses through equitable enforcement and access to resources and, by helping to resolve complaints, DCWP protects the marketplace from predatory practices and strives to create a culture of compliance. Through its community outreach and the work of its offices of Financial Empowerment and Labor Policy & Standards, DCWP empowers consumers and working families by providing the tools and resources they need to be educated consumers and to achieve financial health and work-life balance. DCWP also conducts research and advocates for public policy that furthers its work to support New York City’s communities.