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The 2023 tax filing season is here.

Once again, Brazos Valley volunteers with the AARP Foundation’s Tax-Aide program will prepare income tax returns at no cost for area seniors and those in need. The service is available–by appointment only–at three nearby sites: the Mounce Public Library in Bryan, the Ringer Public Library in College Station, and in Brenham.

To receive this valuable service, here’s what to know and what to do.

Obtain a Tax-Aide packet. You may obtain a printed packet at each of the service sites or use one of the links below to download the appropriate packet. Complete the enclosed forms and assemble your tax documents (W-2s, 1099s, etc.) BEFORE coming to your appointment. Be sure to watch for documents that come in the mail, as we must have them to file your taxes.

Go here to download the Tax-Aide packet for the Bryan and College Station sites. This is the same packet that is now available for pick up at the libraries. If you are going to the Brenham site, download this packet. It’s the same as what you would pick up at the Church office.

Here is a fillable Intake booklet that you can download, save as a PDF by clicking the download arrow, open with Adobe Acrobat Reader (free program), complete on your computer, and print to bring to your appointment.

To download a worksheet for Itemizing Deductions (Schedule A), go here. With the higher Standard Deduction, more taxpayers find it advantageous to take the Standard Deduction rather than itemize.

If you are self-employed or received form 1099-NEC, you will find this worksheet to be helpful. The second page contains more information for gig drivers.

If you or your dependents are in college, then you will want to see if you are eligible for education credits. Start here.

Scheduling your appointment

So you have picked up or downloaded your Tax-Aide packet, you have received W-2s and other necessary tax documents, and you are ready for the next step. You have two choices. You can call to schedule your appointment or, if you have Internet access, you can schedule your own appointment online.

Schedule by phone–for Bryan or College Station sites: We will be available for telephone calls during the times shown below, beginning Friday, January 27. We cannot return messages so please try again if you are not successful with your first call. Appointments to meet with Tax-Aide volunteers will begin Wednesday, February 1, at the College Station library and Friday, February 3, at the Bryan library.

Schedule by phone–for the Brenham site. At this location, our site partner is St. Mary’s Catholic Church. On weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. you may visit the church office to pick up a Tax-Aide packet and call 979-836-4441 for an appointment.

Appointments are available Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. only for the dates of February 16 and 23, and March 2, 16, 23, and 30. Your Tax-Aide meeting will take place at the St Mary’s Catholic Church PAC building at the corner of South Park and West Germania Streets.

Schedule Online: To self-schedule, go to the website for the location where you want to schedule your appointment. No need to login. Select your preferred date and you will be shown the next available appointment times. If these don’t work for you, select a later date in the future and try again. Enter the requested information and submit. You will receive an email confirming your appointment.  

Bryan Library: https://tinyurl.com/BryanAppt  

College Station: https://tinyurl.com/CoStaAppt

See ya soon . . .

Consider IRS’s Free-File Options

https://www.irs.gov/filing/free-file-do-your-federal-taxes-for-free

Taxpayers may also consider preparing their own tax returns using the free tax preparation services offered by the IRS at www.irs.gov/freefile. This website offers access to several tax preparation and filing software companies who provide their brand-name products for free if the taxpayer qualifies.

This website is currently closed, but you can review the qualifications and instructions. According to the IRS, “Check back January 2022 to prepare and file your Federal taxes for free.” In the meantime, you can assemble what you need to get started. See the list on the website.