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Need a Tax Day extension? Website helps you find free tax preparers in South Florida


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If you haven't readied your taxes yet or need to file an extension, there are free options available in South Florida to get the job done. Federal income taxes must be filed by midnight on Tuesday.

First, if you or your family earned under $50,000 in 2011, you're eligible to get free tax preparation and filing -- in person and online -- through MyFreeTaxes.com.

The site lists by zip code South Florida offices offering free in-person tax preparation. Or text TAXES “Your Zip Code” to 91011 to find a location. The site lists locations offering services as part of the Internal Revenue Services' Volunteer Income Tax Assistant program (VITA).

“People can see if they qualify for EITC (Earned Income Tax Credits), child tax credits, and any other IRS credits that might result in getting money back when you file your federal tax return,” said Magaly Prezeau, CEO of the Community Access Center in Miramar. “This especially benefits the non-English speaking communities and the elderly.”

Or, opt to use the online tool provided by H&R Block At Home to file electronically for free.

Another free option, for everyone in all income brackets, is offered by the IRS through FreeFile.IRS.gov. The site lets you choose from a list of free online software and filing options from companies that have agreed to abide by IRS rules of security and privacy.

Also, the "MyTaxBack Calculator" lets you check to see if you may qualify for Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The credit could increase the money you get back from Uncle Sam. According to WWW.IRS.gov, up to 25 percent of eligible families fail to claim the EITC each year which could result in a refund.

Need more time? File an extention through FreeForm or H&R Block. Filing an extension will give you an extra six months to file your return.

MyFreeTaxes.com is sponsored by the Walmart Foundation, One Economy and the United Way.

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Categories: Taxes (5)


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About the authors
Doreen Christensen has never paid full price for anything. If there is a way to save on something, she will find it and share how you can save, too. Doreen is a senior reporter covering consumer news, health, beauty and features for the online and print editions of the Sun Sentinel. A 32-year veteran of the newspaper, she previously was a senior copy editor on the universal copy desk. Doreen spends her time off hunting bargains, clipping coupons, gardening and traveling.

Justine Griffin covers retail and marine business for the Sun Sentinel. She is a Tampa Bay native who graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2010. After spending a year covering crime in St. Augustine, Fla., she moved to Fort Lauderdale and made the switch to business journalism. When she’s not writing, she’s riding horses and spending time with her whippet puppy, Josie.

Marcia Heroux Pounds is the Sun Sentinel's workplace columnist when she's not shopping for shoes. She also writes about small business, which allows her to visit many of South Florida's unique shops and boutiques.

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