The IRS offers a variety of tax resources and information designed to help members of the military community navigate their unique and sometimes complex tax situations. Reviewing these resources before filing can make completing an accurate tax return easier.
Here are some of these resources.
- Tax Information for Members of the Military is the main page on IRS.gov where people can go to find links to helpful info, resources and services.
- A taxpayer's military status affects whether they are eligible for certain benefits. Taxpayers can check their eligibility for military tax benefits by visiting IRS.gov. Qualifying employers include the Armed Forces, uniformed services and support organizations.
- The Armed Forces' Tax Guide is a comprehensive IRS publication for military members. It covers:
- Special rules for military personnel serving abroad, including deadline extensions
- Unreimbursed moving expenses
- Reserve component travel expenses
- The Department of Defense provides MilTax as a free tax resource for the military community. Those eligible for MilTax include members of the Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines and National Guard. Coast Guard members serving under Title 10 authority are entitled to this resource as well. Retired and honorably discharged members are authorized to use the program for up to 180 days past their separation.
There are no income limits. This program includes tax preparation and electronic filing software, personalized support from tax consultants and current information about filing taxes. It's designed to address the realities of military life – including deployments, combat and training pay, housing and rentals and multistate filings. Eligible taxpayers can use MilTax to electronically file a federal tax return and up to three state returns for free.
- Those who do not qualify for MilTax have other options to prepare and e-file their federal taxes for free online.
- Many military installations offer free income tax assistance in-person through the military Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. Military service members can contact their installation's legal office for details. Veterans may also qualify for free tax help at several locations nationwide if they meet income or age requirements.
- Specific rules apply to those who serve in combat zones. These taxpayers and their families can visit the Tax Exclusion for Combat Service page of IRS.gov to learn more. They should also review special rules for the earned income tax credit. If these apply to their tax situation, it could lead to a larger refund.
- Information for veterans is available at www.irs.gov/veterans. This page has federal tax-related information about tax credits and benefits, free tax preparation, financial education and asset-building opportunities available to veterans.