Free tax assistance begins in February

February marks the opening of Tax-Aide sites around Alaska. The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program is designed to prepare basic tax returns and anyone can use the service regardless of age or income.

Sites are staffed by volunteers who are trained and certified by Internal Revenue Service and AARP Foundation instructors to prepare basic tax returns. By using AARP Foundation Tax-Aide, these taxpayers also avoid tax preparation fees and pitches for high-interest tax credit or refund loans. And the service is free.

Find a nearby Tax-Aide site by visiting or calling 1-888-227-7669. For additional information on “Super Saturday” sites, and “self-assisted” sites, individuals can call the Alaska 211 referral line by dialing 2-1-1 or toll free 1-800-478-2221.

Tax-Aide clients are required to have a photo ID plus Social Security cards for all people named on the tax return, according to Jan Watson, Alaska Prospective Volunteer Specialist for AARP Foundation Tax-Aide. She urged people to bring in their tax return from last year, as well.

Without Social Security card information, people may be sent away.

Because of the risk of identity theft, it’s advisable for everyone to file a return, including taxpayers who do not have a filing requirement and don’t usually file.

For the most current information, call the Alaska 211 referral line by dialing 2-1-1 or 1-800-478-2221, or find it on the web at