How to File Your Taxes for Free in NYC

The deadline for filing your 2022 tax returns is April 18. Here’s what you need to know about how to get help — for free — with the paperwork.

Feb. 22, 2023
The City | By Divya Murthy

NEW YORK – Tax season can be daunting, especially if you prepare your paperwork on your own. 

When should you file? What happens if you make a mistake on the form? What determines the size of your refund — or payment? Each tax year can bring new sets of questions, and getting help answering them can be expensive. 

But filing taxes need not cost you a lot of money — or any money. 

In New York City, low- and middle-income taxpayers qualify to get their taxes prepared and filed for free. The services are offered through many libraries, community centers and local nonprofits that are certified by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to provide New Yorkers low-cost or free tax services.

When is the deadline?

You’ll have to file your tax return on or before April 18. If you apply for an extension, your deadline is October 16. Here’s the form you can use to apply for an extension.

Where can I get free tax preparation help in New York City?

Several places. The IRS and New York state and New York City governments all offer some form of free tax preparation and filing help. Each comes with different eligibility requirements. 

Also, nonprofit organizations like Urban UpboundFood Bank for New York City and places like local libraries are staffed by IRS-certified volunteers to help low- to middle-income taxpayers file returns.

I’m a small-business owner or a freelancer — where can I get help with my taxes?

Starting this year, a few NYC free tax prep sites also offer specialized tax prep and filing help for freelancers, small-business owners and gig workers who might have more elaborate tax returns. You’ll need to fill in a few extra forms if this is your situation: along with your government-issued ID, SSN and any W-2s attached to wages, you’ll have to bring forms related to income earned from your small-business or freelance work, such as a 1099, as well as proof of expenses related to your work— like rent statements, gas receipts, vehicle insurance, Internet or utility bills paid, etc. Find the complete list of tax-prep requirements for small-business owners, freelancers and gig workers here.

This is an abridged version of an article from 'THE CITY.' To see the full piece visit their website here. And visit to learn more about filing your taxes in New York City.