Tax-Aide offers alternatives after site closures


On March 16, all Tax-Aide sites were closed until further notice due to the coronavirus pandemic. Both the IRS and the AARP Foundation jointly made the decision to shut down sites in order to protect both the taxpayers and the volunteers working at the sites. At this time, there is no decision on if Tax-Aide sites may reopen for the 2019 filing season. Lincoln County Tax-Aide sites will likely not reopen this season.

The Tax-Aide Foundation, jointly with the IRS, is working towards alternative models of operating the sites that would allow for a possible reopening next season. A few sites will participate in a pilot program this year in order for the model to be vetted and rolled out in the future.

The Lincoln County sites were able to process about 50 percent of their average number of tax returns before the sites closed. For anyone who was not able to use Tax-Aide to file their 2019 tax return, this information may be helpful. 

  • If you are normally due a refund, there is no penalty for not filing this year. You can file your 2019 return next year and receive your refund. You should receive a stimulus check either by direct deposit or a mailed check if you filed a 2018 tax return or do not need to file a return and receive Social Security. The stimulus payment can be claimed on your 2020 tax return should you not receive the 2020 Stimulus Tax Credit in advance of filing next year.
  • If you will owe taxes on your 2019 return, you have until July 15 to file your 2019 tax return or until October 15 if you file an extension.

Here are ways you should consider to file if you need to do so; use the IRS Free File at www.irs.gov if your income is $69,000 or less; purchase any tax software — like H&R Block, Turbo Tax,etc.— and Efile from your home; or contact a professional tax preparer to Efile your 2019 return.

Check the AARP website for more information about site status. A special webpage is dedicated to the coronavirus at https://www.aarp.org/money/taxes/info-2020/tax-return-coronavirus-faq.html.

AARP Foundation works to end senior poverty by helping vulnerable older adults build economic opportunity and social connectedness. As AARP’s charitable affiliate, we serve AARP members and nonmembers alike. Bolstered by vigorous legal advocacy, we spark bold, innovative solutions that foster resilience, strengthen communities and restore hope. 

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