Get out your No. 2 pencil and all those receipts you've been saving, Jan. 30 officially marks the start of the tax season.
The Internal Revenue Service spent most of January updating its systems to comply with tax changes codified in the American Taxpayer Relief Act – a.k.a. the deal to avoid the so-called "fiscal cliff" – and this week will begin to process individual tax returns for the 120 million or so Americans who each year file a form 1040.
Of course, there are still a list of forms that may be filed along with an individual 1040 that the IRS still isn't ready to process – including form 8936 for the qualified plug-in electric vehicle credit, and form 5695 for folks who've made energy-saving home improvements. Those forms (listed here) won't be ready for processing until late February or early March.
Meanwhile, Foundation Communities is again offering free tax preparation for qualified individuals making less than $50,000 a year. Find more information on that program here.