Get Free Tax Help

File your taxes for free!

United Way of King County’s Free Tax Preparation Campaign will run from Monday, January 16th, to Thursday, April 20th. Our IRS-certified volunteers will be available virtually and in person at multiple locations across King County to offer you free tax preparation assistance. An appointment is not necessary for in-person services.

  • Looking to file for free but don’t need assistance? Please see the section “File your taxes without assistance— for free!“ below for a list of websites where you can file for FREE.
  • Are you an international student or do you have an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) instead of a Social Security Number? We can help! Translation services are also available if you need them.
  • Do you need assistance filing for or renewing your ITIN? We will have ITIN filing services available at select tax sites. Please see below for more information.
  • Have questions about our tax services? Please view our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section below.

2023 filing deadline: The due date to file your taxes and make your tax payments is April 18, 2023.


Choose What Works Best for You!


In-Person Assistance

Bring your income and tax documents into one of our many tax sites, meet with a tax preparer, and walk out knowing your maximized tax refund is on its way. Please check the tax site map below to find your nearest tax site. No appointment necessary! We welcome all clients on a first come, first served basis.

Please note: Masking requirements vary by tax site. If a site has a mask requirement, it will be indicated on the map below.

ITIN Assistance


United Way offers free ITIN application and renewals at select sites. Please see below for a list of all ITIN events. No appointment is needed. To apply, you will need to bring proof of foreign status and identity. Please note: Your passport can serve as proof of both your status and identity.

Have questions about ITIN help? Please view the FAQ at the bottom of the page.

Free ITIN Assistance Schedule:

LocationTimeDate
El Centro de la Raza
2524 16th Ave S
Seattle, WA 98144
To Be DeterminedTo Be Determined
Lake City Community Center
12531 28th Ave NE
Seattle, WA 98125
Monday, 5:00-9:00PMJanuary 23rd
Seattle Public Library
Central Location (Downtown)
1000 4th Ave
Seattle, WA 98104
Saturday, 1:00-5:00 PM January 28th 
Seattle Public Library
Central Location (Downtown)
1000 4th Ave
Seattle, WA 98104
Saturdays, 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM February 25th, March 25th & April 8th  
White Center Library
1409 SW 107th St
Seattle, WA 98146
Tuesdays, 1:00-5:00 PM January 31st 
February 14th & 28th 
March 14th & 28th  
April 4th  

Virtual Tax Preparation

Virtual tax assistance will open 1/31/2023.

Interested in filing your taxes virtually but don’t feel comfortable doing it on your own? We’re here to help!

  • Visit our “virtual tax site” to work one-on-one with a tax specialist from the comfort of your home. Our virtual tax specialists can help you determine which documents are needed to file taxes.
  • Please note you must be available for the duration of the tax preparation process and must have the capacity to photograph and upload all necessary tax documents, including your photo ID. Additionally: Our virtual tax assistance slots are limited to ensure the highest level of customer service. If you do not feel comfortable sharing sensitive information like your Social Security Number, photo ID, or tax documents online, or with navigating a web client, please come see us in person instead.
  • It will be necessary to speak with a virtual tax specialist over the phone. However, if you are hard of hearing or deaf, we can accommodate you through our web client.

We will update this section with the link to virtual tax assistance once it is available.


File your taxes without assistance—for free!

Feel comfortable filing your own taxes and just wish there was a way to do it yourself for free, without any hidden fees? Please see below for some resources:

MyFreeTaxes.com

MyFreeTaxes is a service created by United Way Worldwide to provide free tax filing services. Please note: MyFreeTaxes is operated by United Way Worldwide, not United Way of King County. We can answer general questions but cannot directly assist in using this free file option.

IRS Free File

The IRS’ Free File service is another tool you can use to free file your federal income tax return. Please visit this link for information.


General Eligibility


United Way is an equal opportunity provider and anyone who earned less than $80,000 can use United Way’s Free Tax Preparation services. However, the IRS prevents us from preparing certain types of tax returns. For example, we cannot prepare returns for income earned in states outside of Washington or returns that involve cryptocurrencies. For details, as well as more information regarding what documents you need to bring to our tax sites, visit our (FAQ) section below.


Need to contact someone on the tax team?


Please email freetax@uwkc.org for any questions or concerns regarding our services.


The Working Families Tax Credit launches this year! What do you need to know?


The Washington Working Families Tax Credit (WFTC) is a new annual tax credit for Washington residents with low to moderate income, including undocumented people and mixed status families. The amount you can receive ranges from $50-$1,200, depending on your family size and income level.

Check your eligibility now through the Washington State Department of Revenue Working Families Tax Credit website.

Want more information about the Working Families Tax Credit? Please visit WATaxCredit.org.


Frequently Asked Questions


Common General Questions:

What do I need to bring with me to a tax site in order to file my return?

  • Your spouse (if filing jointly)
  • Photo ID (and your spouse’s photo ID, if filing jointly)
  • Social Security Card or ITIN for each person on your return (including dependents)
  • Income documents (W-2, 1099s, Social Security income documents)
  • Business expense documents (if filing for self-employment income)
  • If anyone in the household is insured through the WA HealthPlan Marketplace, please bring Form 1095-A and each dependent’s proof of income
  • Recommended: Bank account and routing numbers to direct deposit your tax refund

I lost my Social Security Card. Can I still file with you?

The IRS prohibits us from preparing a return without verifying your SSN, as an anti-fraud precaution. Prior year tax returns do NOT satisfy document requirements. We will accept the following alternatives for your Social Security Card:

  • Photocopy or photograph of Social Security card (a phone picture is fine)
  • Social Security Benefit Statement (Form 1099-SSA)
  • Military ID with Social Security number
  • Any document issued by the Social Security Administration with the full SSN listed, including a printout from mySocialSecurity

Can I still use my prior-year tax return as proof of my Social Security Number?

Unfortunately, the IRS has recently mandated that we stop using prior year returns to verify identity, even if the return was prepared by United Way of King County. We apologize for the inconvenience.

How is Free Tax Help different from a paid preparer?

  • Our services are 100% free, always
  • We save the average taxpayer an average of $250
  • Our sites are volunteer-staffed, and all our volunteers are IRS certified
  • Every completed tax return undergoes an extensive review process to ensure quality and accuracy
  • We will never offer predatory lending options such as “rapid refunds”
  • There are many other ways that Free Tax Help differs from a paid preparer. We invite you to come in person and see the difference for yourself!

How is Free Tax Help different from self-filing options, such as using TurboTax?

Our tax assistance options are geared toward folks who want help filing their returns or who would rather someone file for them. If normally you would file your taxes online without assistance, there is no need for you to visit one of our sites. Instead, we recommend you use a free file service, such as MyFreeTaxes.com.

What kind of returns can be prepared by United Way of King County?

Free Tax Help can handle most returns, including self-employment income and international students. However, some returns are considered out-of-scope for us, per IRS regulations. Returns involving one of the following income types or expenses cannot be prepared at Free Tax Help sites:

  • Cryptocurrency
  • State tax returns (WA does not have state tax)
  • Income/loss from rental property
  • Sale or foreclosure of a house
  • Active military pay
  • Moving expenses
  • Household employees
  • Farm income/loss
  • Credit from Forms 4136, 2439, 8839 (adoption credit), 8801, 8885
  • Bankruptcy
  • Affordable Care Act: Parts IV (Shared Policy Allocation) and V (Alternative Calculation for Year of Marriage) of Form 8962
  • Business returns that include any of the following:
    • Business expenses in excess of $35,000
    • Business showing a net loss
    • Employee taxes
    • Depreciation or amortization
    • Inventory at year-end
    • Business using accrual-based accounting
    • Business use of home expenses
    • Prior year disallowed passive activity loss

When should I file my tax return?

The IRS filing deadline is April 18th, 2022, but we do not recommend waiting until the last minute. Filing sooner rather than later is better for almost everyone, especially for people who may have to amend their return or who have recently experienced a major life change (marriage, divorce, death, had a child in 2022, etc.). Our tax sites get very busy close to the deadline— come in early to beat the rush!

I filed my taxes, but I still haven’t received my federal refund. What should I do?

Use the IRS’s “Where’s My Refund?” tool to check the status of your federal refund. You will need your Social Security Number or ITIN, your filing status (ex. single, married filing jointly, etc.), and your exact refund amount– the amount of money that your tax preparer or tax software told you to expect.

How do I protect myself from fraud?

Unfortunately, fraud and scams are common during tax season—but preparing yourself to recognize these threats and taking certain precautionary steps can reduce your risk. The website WalletHub compiled a helpful list of tips, starting with the two they deem most important:

  1. File as early as possible every year, even if you don’t expect to owe any taxes or receive a refund.
  2. Take commonsense steps to safeguard your personal information, such as signing up for free 24/7 credit monitoring or putting a freeze on your credit.

Read on for their other tips, such as ordering your tax transcript and improving your ability to recognize webpages that may not be secure or safe: Tax Scams & Tips for Avoiding Them

Is tax help available year-round?

United Way of King County tax sites will be open from January to April, with some sites expected to operate into the summer months depending on service needs. We recommend that you plan to file during the tax season. However, if you anticipate needing assistance after the filing season, you may contact the Free Tax Team at freetax@uwkc.org.

How can I get copies of my tax returns from previous years?

If you are looking for a past Federal return, you can obtain prior-year tax return transcripts on the IRS Get Transcript webpage. If you previously filed with United Way of King County, we can also send you your prior-year returns. Please contact us at freetax@uwkc.org.

I received rental assistance from United Way, is that considered income for my tax situation?

No, you do not need to claim your rental assistance payment in your tax return.

I chose to mail my return and/or I had to amend my return and send it by mail and I haven’t heard back from the IRS yet. How can I find out what’s happening with my refund?

Unfortunately, United Way of King County cannot check on a return’s status once it has been transmitted. Please contact the IRS with any questions you have about the status of your return.

I don’t know if I received my COVID stimulus checks. Is there a way to check if I received them and is it too late to claim this money?

It is not too late to claim your stimulus money if you did not receive it! You can check to see if you received all three payments here: https://www.irs.gov/payments/your-online-account

Can I claim the Working Families Tax Credit at a United Way of King County tax site?

Yes, you can claim the Working Families Tax Credit at both our in-person and virtual tax sites!

I don’t live in King County. Can I still get help from United Way of King County’s tax prep services?

If you’re able to get to one of our sites in King County, we can help you in-person, or we can help you virtually on GetYourRefund.org (virtual services open 1/31/2023). We do not require you to live within King County to receive assistance.

However, please note that we cannot prepare out-of-state returns or state taxes. If you recently moved to Washington State and must file state taxes with the state you moved from, we are not trained to prepare these types of returns. We can prepare your federal return and give you a recommendation on where to file your state return, if you wish.

Are you able to look up my W-2?

Unfortunately we are not able to look up income documents for you. If you do not have your income documents, please request an IRS transcript: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-transcript

Someone claimed my dependent even though they shouldn’t have. What do I do?

Unfortunately, United Way of King County cannot help with this. You will need to contact the IRS for resolution. However, we can help you prepare a return to mail to the IRS.

Common GetYourRefund.org Questions

How does GetYourRefund.org work?

GetYourRefund.org provides an easy way to virtually complete your taxes through a few easy steps:

  • For free virtual tax preparation, click on “File with GetYourRefund”.
  • Create a GetYourRefund profile, answer intake questions, and upload photos of your tax and ID documents. Please note that preparation cannot begin unless all required documents are uploaded.

After you’ve uploaded your documents:

  • You will receive communication from one of our intake volunteers, who will go over your documents and make sure that everything is present.
  • Once your documents are ready, you will pick an appointment slot to have your tax return prepared.
  • One of our tax preparers will complete your return.
  • You will then digitally sign your completed return and choose how you would like it to be transmitted to the IRS.

 

How is GetYourRefund different from filing at an in-person tax site?

In a lot of ways, it isn’t any different— a team of volunteers will receive and review your tax and income documents, they will prepare your return, check it for any errors, and submit it to the IRS on your behalf. Our virtual tax volunteers can also answer any questions you might have. However, there are a few things to consider if you wish to use our virtual tax services:

  • You will need to submit very sensitive information, such as your Social Security Card, Photo ID, tax documents, and bank information (if you wish to direct deposit) through an online portal. If you do not feel comfortable sharing this information virtually, we recommend that you visit an in-person site instead.
  • You will need to be comfortable taking clear, legible photographs of all your documents and be comfortable taking a picture of yourself. If you do not have access to a suitable camera (such as a smartphone camera) and/or a scanner, we recommend that you visit an in-person site.
  • You must be comfortable navigating an online platform. Unfortunately, we cannot walk you through each step of the process.

I uploaded my documents a long time ago, but I haven’t heard back. Where’s my refund?

GetYourRefund is not an automated process. A team of volunteers will be reviewing each uploaded document by hand. Please enable text and/or email alerts (if you are able) and check your account frequently after you upload your documents to look for communication from our virtual volunteers. We cannot prepare and file your return without communicating with you and obtaining your digital signature. Please allow at least 48 hours to hear back from a volunteer after uploading your documents and/or completing other steps in the virtual tax preparation process.

I don’t feel comfortable uploading my personal documents to your platform. Can I just show them to you over a live video?

Unfortunately we cannot accept documents by video, as our volunteers need to verify your documents before we can begin preparing your return. If you do not feel comfortable with uploading your sensitive information, please visit us at an in-person site.

How long does virtual tax preparation through GetYourRefund take?

If you upload all your required documents at once and are available, our volunteers can have your return completed in as little as two days. However, there a few common reasons for delay:

  • Missing or incorrect documents
  • Missing ID
  • Unclear or illegible photos of documents uploaded
  • Missed communication from virtual tax volunteers
  • Missing the appointment call with your tax preparer
  • Beginning the virtual tax preparation process before you have received your W-2, 1099, or other tax forms

To ensure we can serve you as quickly and efficiently as possible, please only begin our virtual process once you have all the required documents, ensure you can take and upload clear photo of these items, check the online portal for new requests and information regularly (at least daily), and understand that delays will occur during times of high demand, such during the last few weeks of tax season.

The best way to keep in contact with your tax volunteer is to enable text alerts from GetYourRefund.

I don’t have all my documents yet. Should I start a profile on GetYourRefund?

Please do not create a profile and begin uploading your documents until you have everything you need to file your taxes. We have limited availability on our online platform, so if we do not hear from you within a few days of opening your account, we will have to mark you as an inactive user. We do this to ensure as many people as possible can access our online services. Inactive users can reactivate their profile by uploading missing documentation or requesting reactivation.

Is there a deadline for virtual tax services?

We are likely to continue our virtual tax services into the summer of 2023. However, if you wish to file before the filing deadline, we strongly recommend that you upload all your documents by the first week of April. If you begin our virtual tax prep process or take steps to reactivate your profile during the final week of the filing season, please know that it is unlikely that we will be able to complete your return by the deadline.

Do you have non-English support for virtual tax services?

We make every effort to provide our full catalog of virtual tax services for non-English and limited-English users, including multilingual volunteers and utilizing language interpretation tools like Language Line. However, if you have someone whom you trust who can help you with interpretation, we strongly recommend you include them in the process.

Can I file for someone else (such as a disabled or deceased relative)?

It’s possible. Please describe the situation in your intake document and inform the intake volunteer of your situation as soon as they contact you so we can determine how or if we can assist you.

Common MyFreeTaxes.com Questions

What is a Simple Return?

Simple tax returns covered by MyFreeTaxes include W-2 Income, Limited Income interest, dividend income, student education expenses, unemployment income, student education credits, student loan interest, claiming the standard deduction, Earned Income Tax Credits, Child Tax Credit, and Child and dependent care expenses. A full list of forms included can be found here: MyFreeTaxes.com/Support.

Are there any service limitations?

Many returns that are typically in-scope and free at our in-person tax sites are not all included in the free software, for example, Self-Employment income (1099-MISC), Mortgage Interest, Real Estate Taxes, other Itemized Deductions, Third-Party Payments (1099-K), HSA, and many others. If you have these tax forms, you will have to purchase an upgrade to file with this system. However, you will receive a discount if using MyFreeTaxes.com. A full list of what is included in the free software can be found at MyFreeTaxes.com/Support.

Are there other free file resources available for me?

You can find additional free filing tools via IRS Free File programs. Visit IRS.gov/FreeFile for more information and details.

What do I need to file on MyFreeTaxes.com?

You will need:

  • An email address to create an account
  • Your exact AGI from line 7 on Form 1040 of your 2022 tax return (to verify identity)
  • SSN for everyone on the return
  • All tax documents
  • Bank account and routing number (for direct deposit/debit)

I don’t know my 2022 AGI. What should I do?

You can find it on line 7 of your 2022 tax return if you still have a copy of your return. If you filed your taxes at a United Way of King County Free Tax Prep site last year, please email freetax@uwkc.org and include your phone number so we can provide you with a copy of last year’s return. If you did not file with us last year, IRS.gov/get-transcript can help you retrieve a copy of last year’s tax return.

Can someone with United Way of King County enter my information for me on MyFreeTaxes.com on my behalf?

Unfortunately, United Way of King County cannot enter your information and tax documents into MyFreeTaxes.com on your behalf. If you’re interested in having your taxes done virtually by our local Free Tax Preparation team, please use our GetYourRefund option.

Am I eligible for IRS.gov/FreeFile?

Anyone with an income under $73,000 can file for free using the IRS Free File program.

ITIN Questions

What is an ITIN?

An ITIN, or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, is a tax processing number issued by the IRS for US residents, their spouses, and/or dependents who are not eligible to receive a Social Security Number.

What are ITINs used for?

ITINs are used only for the purpose of filing taxes. The IRS issues ITINs to enable US residents without a Social Security Number to file their taxes.

What documents do I need to bring with me to get my ITIN renewed with United Way?

You will need one document proving your foreign status, and one document proving your identity. Your passport is the best document you can bring, as it is proof of both your status and your identity. If you do not have a passport, please see below for a list of acceptable documents:

Document

Foreign Status

Identity

National identification card (must show photo, name, current address, date of birth, and expiration date)

U.S. driver’s license

Civil birth certificate (required for dependents under 18 years of age)

Foreign driver’s license

U.S. state identification card

Foreign voter’s registration card

U.S. military identification card

Foreign military identification card

Visa

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) photo identification

Medical records (dependents only – under 6)

School records (dependents only – under 14, under 18 if a student)

Why should ITIN holders file their taxes?

Although unfortunately many tax credits are only available to individuals with Social Security Numbers, in interacting with the tax system, ITIN holders can receive their tax refunds and qualify for some tax credits. Additionally, ITIN holders must file their taxes to renew their ITIN.

How long does the process take?

After mailing the required documents, it typically takes 4-6 weeks for the IRS to create or renew an ITIN. However, sometimes it may take longer due to IRS delays.

How much does it cost to apply for or renew my ITIN with United Way?

Our ITIN renewal service is free.

Will there be non-English language support?

Many of our ITIN Certified Acceptance Agents speak Spanish or another language. We will also have translation services available, through LanguageLine.

I need my tax return to renew my ITIN. Can United Way help with both my tax filing and my ITIN on the same day?

Yes. However, if you would like to receive both tax prep help and ITIN assistance on the same day, please plan to arrive to your chosen tax site as early as possible.


Sponsor Free Tax Preparation


The Free Tax Prep Campaign is generously sponsored by:

Thank you to our Free Tax Prep Campaign community partners: