Tax season is here: filing options for Stuttgart community members

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USAG Stuttgart Public Affairs Office

STUTTGART, Germany — Although routine tax preparation services are no longer offered by Army Legal Assistance centers effective Sept. 30, 2022, community members still have access to free preparation and filing methods as well as paid commercial options.

Military members have free access to an online tool (MilTax) provided through MilitaryOneSource which is purpose-built for their needs and includes personalized consultation services if needed. Regardless of the method, individuals remain responsible for filing a complete and accurate return.

The tax filing season began Jan. 23, and for most taxpayers the deadline is April 18, 2023. U.S. citizens living abroad are granted an automatic two-month extension. As a reminder, do not forget that you must attach a statement to your return when you submit it — explaining why you qualify for the extension.

Filing options available to Stuttgart military community members include:

MilTax for Service Members and Families

  • MilTax is a free service for Service Members provided by the DoD through Military OneSource. It’s built to account for deployments, combat and training pay, housing and rentals, multistate filings, living OCONUS and more. MilTax also provides free one-on-one help from tax professionals with special training in military-specific tax situations in case of any questions. Learn more about the program here.
Click to visit MilTax

IRS Free File

The IRS Free File Program is a public-private partnership between the IRS and many tax preparation and filing software industry companies who provide their online tax preparation and filing for free. It provides two ways for taxpayers to prepare and file their federal income tax online for free:

  • Guided Tax Preparation provides free online tax preparation and filing at an IRS partner site. Our partners deliver this service at no cost to qualifying taxpayers. Taxpayers whose Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is $73,000 or less qualify for a free federal tax return.
  • Free File Fillable Forms are electronic federal tax forms, equivalent to a paper 1040 form. You should know how to prepare your own tax return using form instructions and IRS publications if needed. It provides a free option to taxpayers whose AGI is greater than $73,000.

Some IRS Free File Program partner companies offer free state tax preparation, while others may charge a fee. Be sure to read each company’s information carefully.

Please note: the U.S. Army does not endorse any specific commercial tax preparation service.

Other free and reduced price virtual options exist for Service Members and Civilians. Please ensure you read all relevant information about fees and included services.

On-Post Paid Services (H&R Block)

Continuing Services for Gold Star Families

Per Army Regulation 27-3, surviving dependent Family Members of military members who died on active duty (Gold Star Families) are still eligible for routine tax preparation services through their local Legal Assistance office.

Volunteer Expert Consultations at Army Community Service

Army Community Service offers the assistance of a volunteer tax expert by appointment only. While the volunteer cannot assist with filing taxes, they can answer questions and offer advice. Call ACS at (0)9641-70-596-3362 to make an appointment.

Documents you will need to file your taxes

When using any tax preparation software or paid service, you will need to have certain documents available. For service members using software, it is likely you will need your prior year return to set up an account. Once you created an account, follow the prompts to input data from your current year tax documents. Finally, use your prior year return to check your current return. Remember to include all bank and interest bearing accounts, student loan interest, childcare expenses and taxable information.

  • Social Security Card/SSNs (or ITIN) for all persons claimed on the tax return
  • Form W-2: Shows the amount of taxes withheld from your paycheck for the year and is used to file your federal and state taxes
  • Form 1098: Real estate tax documents including mortgage interest statements
  • Form 1099: Alimony, child support or related payment agreements, interest and dividends, earnings from self-employment
  • Any other documents indicating earned income, such as scholarships
  • Any documented income from rental properties
  • Records of moving expenses related to a new military assignment, retirement, separation and etc.
  • Receipts/documentation for deductibles
  • Child and dependent care information