Tax forms in short supply at local libraries this year
Many residents turn to area libraries as a local resource for forms during tax season. This year may look a little different. The Indiana Department of Revenue (DOR) has issued a letter informing Hoosier libraries of some recent modifications. In a letter dated Oct. 5, 2020, the DOR stated, “Starting with the 2021 tax season, DOR will no longer provide income tax forms or booklets for libraries to distribute to their patrons.
DOR is encouraging all customers to file electronically to reduce errors and speed up the processing time for returns. Over 2 million Hoosiers may qualify to file their federal and state taxes electronically for free with the Indiana Free File program (IN freefile) which can be accessed online at freefile.dor.in.gov.
Hoosiers can also access Indiana tax forms online at dor.in.gov or visit one of our 12 district offices.
As most libraries offer free Wi-Fi and, in many cases, computer and printer access, we would appreciate your help in referring patrons to dor.in.gov to download or print Indiana tax forms and booklets and freefile.dor.in.gov to file their federal and state taxes online. To help, DOR is providing a PDF bookmark template for you to copy and distribute in your library.”
Adult Services Librarian of the Linton Public Library, Diane Anderson, said that the tax booklets will be available this tax season, although they will be in much shorter supply than in prior years.
Anderson said the IRS has provided the Linton branch with a limited amount. In addition, schedules have been eliminated from the list of available forms.
“One thing that’s going to affect us, if you ask us to print out a 1040 EZ form, we can print it, but if we don’t have a specific form number, then we can’t print it out.”
Anderson says many people rely on their local libraries to assist them with acquiring tax forms, although she emphasizes that librarians are not tax specialists and are not authorized to give patrons tax instructions.
Still, the library is a place locals have relied on for resources, particularly those who may not have a computer at home.
She added, “Every day I get one or two people that say they are computer illiterate and need help.”
Karen Holz, Director of the Bloomfield-Eastern Greene County Public Library, said, “We received three Indiana Tax IT-40 Booklets. We are keeping one for reference, circulating one at the Bloomfield Branch and one at the Eastern Branch for a week at a time. We are printing up to 10 pages for free from the Indiana State Website, after that it is $0.10 /page. We haven’t heard from the IRS as to how many if any that they are sending out to the libraries this year.”
Andrea Fuller, director of Worthington’s library, stated there are no physical tax forms available; however, pages can be printed by request.