Washington, DC – Today, a coalition of tax advocates gathered in Washington, DC to call out tax prep companies for blocking simplified filing policies and to support the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)’s exploration of alternative free tax filing tools. Congressionally mandated through the Inflation Reduction Act and to address taxpayers’ concerns around the complexity of current tax filing options, the IRS is exploring the development of a free, public “Direct eFile” tool that can help taxpayers file and get the full refunds they deserve without being dependent on paying hundreds of dollars to tax prep companies. The IRS is anticipated to release their findings next month.
Photos from today’s gathering can be found at www.economicsecproj.org/free-and-simple
“The private tax prep industry has a stranglehold on the tax filing process in the United States,” said Adam Ruben, Vice President of Campaigns and Political Strategy at Economic Security Project. “We need a simplified system overseen by the IRS that benefits all taxpayers, not just the wealthy and well-connected. The IRS has both the legislative authority and the funding to create a free and simplified public tax filing option – and that’s what they must do.”
“There’s absolutely no reason that taxpayers should have to shell out their hard-earned income to corporations like H&R Block and Intuit for a service that the IRS can offer Americans for free. Policymakers should ignore the protests from companies trying to protect their exorbitant profits and deliver a free and simplified tax filing option as quickly as possible,” said Lindsay Owens, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Groundwork Collaborative.
“Families should not have to spend precious time and hundreds of dollars every year just to file their taxes. A free, easy way to file taxes is critical for all families, and can help ensure they receive the Child Tax Credit and other tax credits and benefits they are owed—advancing economic and racial justice over the long term,” said Elisa Minoff, Senior Policy Analyst, Center for the Study of Social Policy.
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