A do-it-yourself guide to electronically filing your tax returns

Stacey Carmany

For those who prefer to file their own taxes rather than pay a professional to prepare them, electronic filing is a fast, free alternative. Filing federal, state and municipal tax income tax returns is a fairly simple process.

You will need all your 2008 W-2s, your 1098-T from Kent State, your bank account interest statements, or 1099-INTs, and your bank account number and routing number, if you’d like to receive your refund through direct deposit.

Filing your federal tax return

To file federal income tax returns for free on the Web, you must access Free File through the IRS Web site at www.irs.gov.

Follow the instructions and fill in the information from the numbered boxes on your W-2’s. Note that the federal employer number is not the same as the state employer number.

Telephone assistance for individual filers is available at 1-800-829-1040 from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Be sure to check out the student section of the IRS Web site at www.irs.gov/individuals/students/index.html

Don’t forget to print a copy of your completed federal tax return.

Filing your Ohio income tax electronically

Ohio income taxes can be filed at www.tax.ohio.gov.

Again, you will need your W-2s. You will also need the copy of your federal tax return you printed.

You can choose to file by either e-File or e-Forms. E-forms is a program that will walk you through the filing process. The forms are designed to look like paper tax forms, but allow you to enter information and submit electronically.

Both programs do most of the math for you. If you chose to use e-forms, you must have Adobe Reader 7.0.5 or higher.

For help, call the Ohio Department of Taxation’s help line at (1-800) 282-1780.

Do I have to file?

Anyone living within the Kent corporation limits for more than 30 days is required to file a 2008 municipal income tax return. If you live in the township, on Alpha Drive for example, you do not have to file.

Using RITA to file your Kent income taxes

The Regional Income Tax Agency’s Web site can be accessed through the City of Kent’s Income Tax Division site, www.kentohio.org/dep/incom_tax.asp, or at www.ritaohio.com.

You will be instructed to create a new account.

Please note your passwords must be at least eight characters and contain at least one capital letter, one lowercase letter and one number.

For assistance, call RITA’s help line at (1-800) 460-7482 Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., or stop by the City’s income tax office at 325 S. Depeyster St.

– Stacey Carmany