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File Your Taxes Electronically for Quicker Processing

20220125-055941taxes

The State of Arizona's individual income tax filing season has launched and is now accepting electronically filed 2021 income tax returns. Before filing, ensure you have all documentation as some tax statements are not required to be sent until January 31, such as W-2s, 1099s, and annual tax summaries.

The Arizona Department of Revenue (ADOR) recommends taxpayers file electronically and have refunds direct deposited into their bank accounts to help reduce errors and the potential for tax fraud. During the last tax filing season, about 85 percent of taxpayers filed electronically and received their refund six times faster than paper filers.

ADOR is dedicated to providing taxpayers an easy and secure way to file, and to processing income tax refunds as quickly as possible.

If you file electronically and choose direct deposit, you can look for your refund within a couple weeks of the return's acceptance.

If you file a paper return, you can anticipate your refund at a minimum of 8 weeks from the date you filed.

Be advised: some tax returns need extra review for accuracy, and to protect taxpayers from fraud and identity theft, and therefore extra processing time may be necessary.

The deadline to file and pay this year is April 18, as April 15 is observed as District of Columbia Emancipation Day in Washington D.C., the holiday moves the last day to file and pay tax to the 18th of April.

Taxpayers can view a list of software providers certified to submit electronically filed returns with the department and access Arizona tax forms and instructions (including instruction booklets) on the Department of Revenue's website. Instruction booklets are also available at ADOR offices and local libraries.

To avoid delays, here are some tips for taxpayers:

  • E-file and designate any refund for direct deposit to your bank.
  • If filing a paper return, use black ink and print on white paper.
  • Verify you are using the correct tax year form by looking at the upper right corner.
  • Ensure all the necessary lines and forms are filled out properly.
  • Don't misspell names or use two different names.
  • Make sure key information like your tax ID number, Social Security number, routing number, or account number are correct in all the appropriate boxes.
  • Double-check to ensure you have all the information and supporting documentation.
  • If filing by paper, mail to the correct P.O. Box listed on the form according to tax due or refund.
  • Send payment with the correct return. ADOR payment with the state return to the correct ADOR P.O. Box and IRS payment with federal return sent to the IRS address.
  • If sending a paper payment, include your voucher, as the Department needs your Social Security number or employee identification number, along with the tax period and tax type.

Free Tax Preparation Services Available to Taxpayers

Taxpayers requiring additional assistance this tax filing season can take advantage of the following free tax filing services:

Free File Alliance – Offers a free file program to Arizona taxpayers who meet certain criteria. Visit https://azdor.gov/e-services/free-electronic-filing-individuals for more information.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) – Provides free tax help to people who generally make $58,000 or less, persons with disabilities, and limited English-speaking taxpayers who need assistance in preparing their tax returns. For more information, please visit www.irs.gov/Individuals/Free-Tax-Return-Preparation-for-You-by-Volunteers.

AARP Foundation Tax-Aide – Delivers free assistance to individuals 50 and older who cannot afford a tax preparation service to file federal and Arizona returns. For more information, go to www.aarp.org/money/taxes/aarp_taxaide.

Note: Due to COVID-19, some tax preparation services may not offer in-person assistance but rather drop-off or virtual assistance. Contact tax preparer for availability.
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