Tax Savings in North Dakota | VideoBrenton Burkett | 3/2/2013
One of the hardest parts of filing taxes can be finding a place to start. With so many forms and ways to file them, where do you turn?
There are ways you can do your taxes yourself, quickly and affordably. North Dakota Tax Commissioner Cory Fong says the state provides plenty of its own resources. "On our website, you can find a variety of sources of information that will help you decide what`s the best way to file your taxes."
The North Dakota tax website has a list of e-file providers that support state forms. You could qualify for a free e-file on your state and federal taxes. "So they enter their information once, and they have both returns filed simultaneously," said Fong.
More taxpayers are filing online every year. But some still prefer paper forms and face-to-face meetings. Choosing the right preparer can also save you some cash.
At Liberty Tax in Bismarck, you can meet with a licensed preparer starting at $35. They believe, while it may cost more up front, their expertise can get you a bigger return on your investment.
"We follow the law and the tax code. We try to get the most, most refund available for the client," said Chen Schuh of Liberty Tax Services.
Another option lets you work with a tax preparer, for free. Volunteer Income Tax Assistance provides services based on needs, so you have to meet income and other criteria to qualify. Some who can are taking the opportunity, like Summer Monteau, who says, "I just thought this was a good way to get it done... And not have to pay so much out of pocket."
The University of Mary is hosting a VITA program in Bismarck. VITA is available at more than 20 locations throughout North Dakota. The volunteers say they`re as well-trained as the pros, and are the best bet for the price.
"We can always clarify, person-to-person, and help them work out through the steps," said Cassandra Nelsen.
Another program, Tax Counseling for the Elderly, can also prepare your taxes at no cost. It`s available to seniors and all lower-income taxpayers. Fong says these programs are valuable to those who may need them.
"I feel very comfortable -- both programs having volunteers that know what they`re doing, and are working in the best interest of the taxpayer."
Whether you do your taxes on your own or with someone at your side, Fong advises doing your research to find the best resources. So you can get your taxes done quickly, and save the most money.
For more information on any of these services, go to nd.gov/taxes.