With the advent of the internet and widely available free or affordable electronic filing options, the IRS has moved away from sending out paper tax packages every year as they used to. Do you remember how you used to get your tax forms in the mail every year, and the sense dread that it gave you? No longer. The IRS no longer automatically sends out paper tax packages by mail. I'm sure it means a good cost savings for the IRS and for taxpayers, but what if you're one of those folks who just prefers to file their taxes the old fashioned way? What options do you have and where can you get paper IRS forms and publications?
Places To Get Paper IRS Forms And Publications
There are a variety of places that you can still get your paper tax forms, or electronic versions that you can then print out. From the IRS:
- On the Internet: You can access forms and publications on the IRS website 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at http://www.irs.gov.
- Taxpayer Assistance Centers: There are 401 TACs across the country where IRS offers face-to-face assistance to taxpayers, and where taxpayers can pick up many IRS forms and publications. Visit http://www.irs.gov and go to Contact My Local Office on the Individuals page to find a list of TAC locations by state. On the Contact My Local Office page, you can also select TAC Site Search and enter your zip code to find the IRS walk-in office nearest you as well as a list of the services available at specific offices.
- At Convenient Locations in Your Community: During the tax filing season, many libraries and post offices offer free tax forms to taxpayers. Some libraries also have copies of commonly requested publications. Many large grocery stores, copy centers and office supply stores have forms you can photocopy or print from a CD.
- By Mail: You can call 1-800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676) Monday through Friday 7:00 am to 10:00 pm local time – except Alaska and Hawaii which follow Pacific time – to order current year forms, instructions and publications as well as prior year forms and instructions by mail. You will receive your order by mail, usually within 10 days.
The IRS requests that taxpayers wait until after January 10, 2011, to put in a request for tax products for 2010.
Other IRS Resources
- Publication 910, Guide to Free Tax Services (PDF 636K)
- Publication 2053A, Quick and Easy Access to IRS Tax Help and Forms (PDF 40K)
- State tax forms (link)
State tax forms
Good information, although I use a CPA. Since the Internet is so widespread, printing them yourself seems like the easiest way to get your forms.
Mr. Money says
I agree. I do my own taxes using Turbotax, but if you want to go the old fashioned route – printing your own is probably the way to go – unless you have a broken printer or something along those lines. :)
Ron Ratliff says
Thanks for the post. When I first read the summary, I was inclined to quip “you can’t” but you’ve identified where I would advise a non-client to go for forms.
As a practicing CPA, I have a forms service available, but often find it just as quick to go to http://www.irs.gov to get a form.
If I may, I would also like to say something about “tax in a box” software. I wholeheartedly agree that many, many taxpayers can and should use one of the “free” or low-cost services. Just don’t assume, however, that you can take your completed return to a CPA for review and not be charged a fee for his/her time, efforts and expertise.