NASHVILLE – The Internal Revenue Service on Friday opened the 2014 tax filing season by highlighting a growing number of online services at irs.gov and encouraged Tennesseans to check out a variety of tax benefits, such as the often-overlooked Earned Income Tax Credit.
"As Tennesseans start filing their returns now, we hope those who worked any part of last year won't forget to see if they qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit," said IRS spokesman Dan Boone.
Workers who earned less than $52,000 last year may qualify for EITC, worth up to $6,044. They can use the EITC Assistant at irs.gov or tax software to check eligibility. One-third of the population eligible for EITC changes each year as their personal circumstances change.
Last year, about 648,000 Tennessee workers claimed $1.6 billion in EITC. Average payments were more than $2,400 per tax return.
About three out of four filers get refunds, and the IRS issues more than nine in 10 of these refunds in less than 21 days. Filers can check the status of their refund using the "Where's My Refund?" tool at irs.gov or using the free IRS2Go app on a mobile device.
Boone reminded Tennessee filers that e-file, when combined with direct deposit, is the fastest, safest way to get a refund. About 2 million Tennessee filers qualify, based on income, to e-file using the free brand-name tax software at irs.gov/freefile. All filers qualify to use the free fillable forms option there.
Lower-income and elderly filers who need help with their taxes can visit one of 145 free tax help sites staffed by IRS-certified volunteers in 44 Tennessee counties. Filers can call 800-906-9887 or visit irs.gov to find the closest help site.