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Publication 524

How To Get Tax Help(p11)

If you have questions about a tax issue, need help preparing your tax return, or want to download free publications, forms, or instructions, go to and find resources that can help you right away.

Preparing and filing your tax return.(p11)

Find free options to prepare and file your return on or in your local community if you qualify.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free tax help to people who generally make $54,000 or less, persons with disabilities, the elderly, and limited-English-speaking taxpayers who need help preparing their own tax returns. The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program offers free tax help for all taxpayers, particularly those who are 60 years of age and older. TCE volunteers specialize in answering questions about pensions and retirement-related issues unique to seniors.
Getting answers to your tax law questions. On, get answers to your tax questions anytime, anywhere.
  • Go to for a variety of tools that will help you with your taxes.
  • Enter "ITA" in the search box on for the Interactive Tax Assistant, a tool that will ask you questions on a number of tax law topics and provide answers. You can print the entire interview and the final response.
  • Enter "Pub 17" in the search box on to get Pub. 17, Your Federal Income Tax for Individuals, which features details on tax-saving opportunities, 2015 tax changes, and thousands of interactive links to help you find answers to your questions.
  • Additionally, you may be able to access tax law information in your electronic filing software.

Tax forms and publications.(p11)

You can download or print all of the forms and publications you may need on Otherwise, you can go to to place an order and have forms mailed to you. You should receive your order within 10 business days.

Direct Deposit.(p11)

The fastest way to receive a tax refund is by combining direct deposit and IRS e-file. Direct deposit securely and electronically transfers your refund directly into your financial account. Eight in 10 taxpayers use direct deposit to receive their refund. The majority of refunds are received within 21 days or less.

Getting a transcript or copy of a return.(p11)


Using online tools to help prepare your return.(p11)

Go to and click on the Tools bar to use these and other self-service options.
For help with the alternative minimum tax, go to

Understanding identity theft issues.(p11)


Checking on the status of a refund.(p11)


Making a tax payment.(p11)

The IRS uses the latest encryption technology so electronic payments are safe and secure. You can make electronic payments online, by phone, or from a mobile device. Paying electronically is quick, easy, and faster than mailing in a check or money order. Go to to make a payment using any of the following options.
IRS2Go provides access to mobile-friendly payment options like IRS Direct Pay, offering you a free, secure way to pay directly from your bank account. You can also make debit or credit card payments through an approved payment processor. Simply download IRS2Go from Google Play, the Apple App Store, or the Amazon Appstore, and make your payments anytime, anywhere.

What if I can’t pay now?(p12)

Click on the "Pay Your Tax Bill" icon on for more information about these additional options.

Checking the status of an amended return.(p12)

Go to and click on the Tools tab and then Where’s My Amended Return?

Understanding an IRS notice or letter.(p12)

Enter "Understanding your notice" in the search box on to find additional information about your IRS notice or letter.

Visiting the IRS.(p12)

Locate the nearest Taxpayer Assistance Center using the Office Locator tool on Enter "office locator" in the search box. Or choose the "Contact Us" option on the IRS2Go app and search Local Offices. Before you visit, use the Locator tool to check hours and services available.

Watching IRS videos.(p12)

The IRS Video portal contains video and audio presentations for individuals, small businesses, and tax professionals. You’ll find video clips of tax topics, archived versions of panel discussions and Webinars, and audio archives of tax practitioner phone forums.

Getting tax information in other languages.(p12)

For taxpayers whose native language is not English, we have the following resources available.
  1. Taxpayers can find information on in the following languages.
    1. Spanish.
    2. Chinese.
    3. Vietnamese.
    4. Korean.
    5. Russian.
  2. The IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers provide over-the-phone interpreter service in over 170 languages, and the service is available free to taxpayers.

The Taxpayer Advocate Service Is Here To Help You(p12)


What is the Taxpayer Advocate Service?(p12)

The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) is an independent organization within the Internal Revenue Service that helps taxpayers and protects taxpayer rights. Our job is to ensure that every taxpayer is treated fairly and that you know and understand your rights under the Taxpayer Bill of Rights.

What Can the Taxpayer Advocate Service Do For You?(p12)

We can help you resolve problems that you can’t resolve with the IRS. And our service is free. If you qualify for our assistance, you will be assigned to one advocate who will work with you throughout the process and will do everything possible to resolve your issue. TAS can help you if:

How Can You Reach Us?(p12)

We have offices in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Your local advocate’s number is in your local directory and at You can also call us at 1-877-777-4778.

How Can You Learn About Your Taxpayer Rights?(p12)

The Taxpayer Bill of Rights describes ten basic rights that all taxpayers have when dealing with the IRS. Our Tax Toolkit at can help you understand what these rights mean to you and how they apply. These are your rights. Know them. Use them.

How Else Does the Taxpayer Advocate Service Help Taxpayers?(p13)

TAS works to resolve large-scale problems that affect many taxpayers. If you know of one of these broad issues, please report it to us at

Low Income Taxpayer Clinics(p13)

Low Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITCs) serve individuals whose income is below a certain level and need to resolve tax problems such as audits, appeals, and tax collection disputes. Some clinics can provide information about taxpayer rights and responsibilities in different languages for individuals who speak English as a second language. To find a clinic near you, visit or see IRS Publication 4134, Low Income Taxpayer Clinic List.